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Hair Pieces

Hair Pieces explores the evocative and complex significance of hair in contemporary culture through a selection of recent Australian and international works of art. For millennia hair has been a resonant and compelling site of meaning, transmitting ideas about gender, mythology, status and power, the body, psychology, feminism and notions of beauty.  At once radiant and repellent, and often richly symbolic, it has always assumed a particular importance in relation to the self, history and society. This exhibition examines the myriad ways in which artists utilise hair to investigate and conjure generative and even magical possibilities encompassing growth, empowerment and transformation.


Artists include: Marina Abramović (SRB/USA) and Ulay (GER/USA), Janine Antoni (US), Georgia Banks (AUS), Polly Borland (US), Sonia Boyce (UK), Christina May Carey (AUS), Sadie Chandler (AUS), Edith Dekyndt (BXL/BE), Karla Dickens (AUS), Jim Dine (US), Peter Ellis (AUS), Tarryn Gill (AUS), Mona Hatoum (US), Zhang Chun Hong (US), Lou Hubbard (AUS), Jiang Jian (CN), Nusra Latif Qureshi (AUS), John Meade (AUS), Ana Mendieta (US), Hayley Millar Baker (AUS), S.J Norman (US), J.D ‘Okhai Ojeikere (NRA), Patricia Piccinini (AUS), Wes Placek (AUS), C. J Pyles (US), Chuxiao Qu (AUS), Julie Rrap (AUS), Charlie Sofo and Debris Facility (AUS), Christian Thompson (AUS), Kemang Wa Lehulere (SA), Helen Wright (AUS), Ai Yamaguchi (JPN), Shih Yung-Chun (TW), Louise Weaver (AUS).

Curator - Melissa Keys

4 May - 6 October 2024 
Heide Museum of Modern Art

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"In the room, there is a section, the only place without yarn, where a tall glass cabinet is placed. Inside, there are many doll heads. As I approached and looked closer, the doll heads resembled those that women often reminisce about from their childhood - their hair all made of yarn. "I'm weaving a carpet, and the pattern inside is myself," the woman proudly introduced the glass cabinet. The weaving of this carpet is only halfway done, and all the yarn comes from the doll heads inside the cabinet. They're gathered and woven into this large carpet, the woman explained excitedly. It's like some sort of private ritual the woman is conducting, right here in this mysterious little room."

'Pre-Construction' by Shih Yung Chun


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