I got out of my sick bed briefly tonight to go to the Opening Night of the new exhibition by Bill Henson at the Roslyn Oxley 9 Gallery. Henson is a reasonably controversial photographer with allegations of teenage pornography previously levelled at his work. Irrespective of that debate, his photographs are always beautifully shot and presented, and so I was keen to see whether or not he would be as interesting or as controversial this time.
The topless teenage girls are still there in this exhibition, along with two other image themes, working ships and parklands. All three thematics are shot at the period just after dusk but before it has truly become night, that wonderful period where the light somehow conveys the peacefulness of a day’s end. But there’s also a danger in some of these photographs, especially in the ones featuring the teenage girls (notions of sexuality) and in the parklands (you might imagine a murder has just occured or is about to occur). I don’t really understand how the working ships fit into the exhibition, though I’m sure they do.