Skins by Joshua Bonson

ReDot Fine Art Gallery
Jul 10, 2014 5:57AM

The ReDot Fine Art Gallery is delighted to announce the addition of a new artist to its stable with the showing of a series of new works by Joshua Bonson, one of the Northern Territories most exciting young emerging talents of recent years.

Skins by Joshua Bonson will be Joshua’s first overseas solo show, following hot off the first solo and sell-out show in Australia in 2013 and will showcase over 25 recent works by this Darwin born and bred Indigenous man whom captured the attention of the Australian Art Scene by storm, becoming the youngest ever finalist in the 24th Telstra National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Art Award (2007) at the tender age of only 18, one of Australia’s most prestigious art prizes. To show this was no flash in the pan this was followed up in 2008 by being again selected for the 25th Telstra Award.

Accolades have followed him ever since and at the age of 22, he won the Togart Contemporary Art Award, the youngest ever winner. In 2013 Joshua made it a hat-trick of Telstra nominations, a finalist in the City of Albany Art Prize and winner of the Top End NAIDOC artist of the year prize 2014.

Born in 1988, this now 25 year old has already achieved more in his career than many do in a lifetime, his work has already been collected by major institutions, including the National Gallery of Australia (NGA), the Kerry Stokes Collection, the Wheelock Properties Collection, the Toga Contemporary Art Collection and Art Bank Collection to name but a few. 

Bonson is a painter who works in a highly textured, but largely monochromatic style, which is a form of abstract expressionism. Bonson recreates the scales of a saltwater crocodile, which is his totem. The armoured skin of the reptile is shown by the built up serrations of paint, his works read as a close-up of a reptile’s skin, and as a landscape both seen from a distance and close-up details of rocks and sand.

Skin is a celebration of my family's totem, The Saltwater Crocodile and my personal view of the world. Even though I live in the Northern Territory, part of my heritage comes from the Torres Strait and creating this work is my way of trying to represent my skins affiliations and my place there.

Joshua and his peers are important – they express a perspective on a particular reality that can help us better understand the social condition of young Indigenous people at this point in time and this will be critical as modern Indigenous people find their place in modern Australian life.

This exhibition, which will be attended by Joshua, opens on Wednesday, 17th September and runs till Saturday, 25th October 2014 and it is a must-see for anyone interested in following the development of modern contemporary Indigenous art, from one of the countries youngest and most talented urban artists.

Opening reception: Wednesday, 17th September, 7:30 to 9:30 pm

For further information, visit www.redotgallery.com or drop a note to [email protected]

ReDot Fine Art Gallery
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Jenna Gribbon, Luncheon on the grass, a recurring dream, 2020. Jenna Gribbon, April studio, parting glance, 2021. Jenna Gribbon, Silver Tongue, 2019