Juno Gemes is one of Australia's most celebrated contemporary photographers. She has spent over 40 years documenting the achievements and struggles of Aboriginal Australians for justice, recognition and respect. Her photographs are characterised by a focus on portraiture as well as narrative sequences, and an acute sense of intimacy with her subjects.
" When I began my photographic practice 40 years ago, there were very few images of Aboriginal people, life, culture or struggle from an informed, positive insider's point of view. That is what I set out to provide and create with the individuals and communities I have worked with."
- Juno Gemes
Michael Aird has curated over 20 exhibitions, published several academic articles and has been involved in numerous photographic projects. In 1996 he established Keeaira Press, an independent publishing house. Much of what Keeaira Press has published focuses on art and photography, which reflects Michael's interest in recording aspects of urban Aboriginal history and culture.
" For nearly 30 years I have been working in the area of Aboriginal arts and history. Photography has played an important role in the work that I have done and as result I have accumulated an extensive archive of images. Many of the photographs I have taken are of Aboriginal people in situations that not only reflect their achievements but more importantly they simply document mundane aspects life."
Up Close will be officially opened by Gaye Sculthorpe, curator and section head of the Oceanic department at the British Museum, London.