Marking the 30th anniversary of the establishment of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal deaths in custody, Warraba Weatherall challenges the relationship between contemporary colonisation, the prison system, and the perpetual narrative of incarceration of Indigenous Australians.

InstitutionaLies is a new body of sculptural work, presented through the use of customary Kamilaroi knowledge intertwined with Weatherall’s contemporary practice. The exhibition provides an entry point for audiences in to the ongoing effect of incarceration on First Nations peoples, prompting the question ‘Is the past forever present?’

In InstitutionaLies Weatherall references the influence of Victorian Panopticon observational theories on prison architecture. Imbued with ideas of control and obedience, the panopticon provides a diagram of power relationships that influence how societies establish law and order through concepts of vision. Critiquing the violence inherent within mechanisms of surveillance, Weatherall’s exhibition will be a deeply moving experience for all, reflecting not only upon our past, but very much our present.

Warraba Weatherall is an exciting emerging artist of national and international interest. As a recent graduate of the Queensland College of Art in 2016, Warraba was included in the 2017 national graduate exhibition Hatched at Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts. This work has since been acquired by the National Art Bank. Warraba has also been shortlisted for the prestigious 34th TELSTRA National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards, due to be announced on the 11th of August 2017. Having begun his practice as a street artist, InstitutionaLies sees Warraba moving from primarily two-dimensional work into sculpture and installation practice for his first major solo exhibition.​





OPENING / 9 August 2017, 6pm, The Gallery level 2 *

ARTIST TALK / 6pm, 10 August 2017, The Gallery level 2 *

PANEL DISCUSSION / 7pm, 10 August 2017, The Lumen Room, ground floor

PANELISTS / Richard Bell, Debbie Kilroy OAM, Sam Watson and Professor Aileen Moreton-Robinson

EXHIBITION / 9 August – 26 August 2017, The Gallery level 2*
Please note the gallery will be closed on 16th August for the public holiday.

Exhibition Catalogue // with introduction to the exhibition

*Please note: Unfortunately Metro Arts’ 77 year old lift is currently out of service, restricting access to the building by the stairs only. The Gallery is on level 2 of the building. We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience this causes. If you have special accessibility needs please contact our friendly staff on +617 3002 7100 or info@metroarts.com.au so that we are able to assist you. The Lumen Room is on the ground floor.


2017 / Metro Arts – Exhibition Program, co-presented by Metro Arts and Warraba Weatherall




InstitutionaLies is supported by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.



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