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 Bill Henson  (1955 - )

About: Bill Henson


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Lived/Active: Australia      Known for: photography

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Ad Code: 4
Bill Henson Untitled 1987-88
Bill Henson Untitled 1987-88 C-print, gaffer tape and tacks on plywood 93.7 x 69.3 in.
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Please note: Artists not classified as American in our database may have limited biographical data compared to the extensive information about American artists.

Bill Henson (1955-)

Henson studied at the Phillip Institute of Technology (later the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology) and the Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne.

Henson's works often meditate on the categories of and relationships between male and female; youth and adulthood; day and night; light and dark; nature and civilization.  His images often use flattened perspective and tend towards abstraction.  The faces of the subjects are often blurred or partly shadowed and do not directly face the viewer.

His intention is to use photography for creative expression.  He states that he is not interested in a political or sociological agenda, although the viewer cannot help but relate his works to their own stance on these issues.  Henson, however, is not intending his photographs to be authoritative evidence but rather to suggest endless possibilities and cause people to wonder.

Henson's work has been widely exhibited, including the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Venice Biennale, the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia, the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia and the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris. His current practice involves holding one exhibition in Australia every two years, and up to three overseas exhibitions each year.

Henson's photographs reflect an interest in ambiguity and transition. The use of chiaroscuro is common throughout his works.  His photographs are painterly and often presented as diptychs, triptychs and other groupings.


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