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Fairy Tales

A blockbuster fairy tales exhibition is taking over GOMA for five enchanted months.
By Sarah Ward
March 27, 2023
By Sarah Ward
March 27, 2023

They're the stories we all lapped up as kids, telling us about enchanted creatures, magic and more. They're behind plenty of movies that still grace our screens, too. And, they're the focus of a huge Australian-exclusive exhibition coming to Brisbane's Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) in the summer of 2023–24. Yes, we're talking about fairy tales.

The entrancing showcase is indeed called Fairy Tales and, taking over GOMA's entire ground floor, it'll explore how these folklore-, myth- and legend-related narratives have fascinated audiences through art and culture over not just years and decades, but centuries. If creepy woods have influenced sculptures, or tales of princes and princesses have inspired painters, expect to see it here, in a blockbuster showcase that'll run from December 2, 2023–April 28, 2024.

Yayoi Kusama

Also included: everything from drawings and installations through to fashion, as well as films and filmic elements, such as props, and costumes. GOMA hasn't unveiled an accompanying movie program in its Australian Cinematheque just yet, but you likely don't need to wish for that to happen — just wait for further details late next year.

Wicked witches, magic animals (fierce and friendly alike), coming-of-age tales, shifting gender roles, bravery, loyalty, castles, coaches, pumpkins — they'll all feature in some way. Artists involved include GOMA favourites Yayoi Kusama and Patricia Piccinini, plus Jana Sterbak, Kiki Smith, Abdul Abdullah, Ron Mueck and Charles Blackman. The list goes on, like breadcrumb trails.

And, if you like huge site-specific installations, the South Brisbane gallery has commissioned something special from Brazilian artist Henrique Oliveira. He'll transform the building's architecture into a sure-to-be-stunning gnarled and twisted woodland (a sure-to-be-snapped piece, too, naturally).

H Walker

Top image: Henrique Oliveira / Brazil b.1973 / Baitogogo 2013 / Palais de Tokyo, Paris / Plywood and tree branches / 6740 x 1179 x 2076cm / Courtesy SAM Art Projects, Galerie GP&N Vallois, Galeria Millan / © Henrique Oliveira / Photograph: André Morin / This work is indicative of a new commission by Henrique Oliveira for the exhibition 'Fairy Tales' at QAGOMA.

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