2015 Michael Williams


05/03/15 – 28/03/14

Opening event: Thursday 5 March, 6-8pm

To be opened by Stephen Zagala (MGA)





Since the early 1980’s, I have been fixated with the dynamic and often intrusive presence of colour within public and personal environments.  I use flash to isolate elements, accentuate colour and to forge a direct momentary relationship with my subjects. These images are far from subtle and suggest a bigger social narrative beyond their bold graphic and possibly formulaic appearance.

Many of these images were shown at Gallery Ill Diafframa in Milan Italy in 1989 in a solo show titled A Touch of Colour.

Chromophobia is the first public exhibition of these images in Australia.


Facebook event here.

Read VICE’s interview with Michael here.

Read Robert Nelson’s article in The Age here.


Twins, Hawaii 1983     chromaphobia     Red Wall, Greville St 1984

Red coat 2014     FA_black-man3     Station-Pier

Brighton Beach UK 1987     Raj, Laverton 1985     FA_running-man

Confrontation, Pickles St 1986     FA_Appleton-Dock     Lefkas, Greece 1987

FA_Circus     Mona-Lisa     Motel Proprietress 1987

Kororoit Creek Rd, Altona 1987     FA_Taradale     FA_heavenly-queen-digital-canon_0830

FA_Footscray-Rd     The Swimmer 1983     Stuart Highway, Northern Territory 1984

FA_Alternative-Energy-corrected-#3-lighter-foreground-copy     FA_woman-running-from-fog-adjusted     FA_melb-show-adjusted



Chromogenic (C-type) prints

Edition of 10 + 2AP


Michael Williams is a photographer of both still and moving imagery, who began his bold social realist exploration of Melbourne in the early 1980’s. Armed with a medium format stills camera and a Polaroid SX70, he photographed in the streets, beaches and the outer suburbs of Melbourne.

The vibrant instantly gratifying SX70 Polaroids began to dominate Williams’ practice, cementing a fixated relationship with bold graphic colour and open flash photography. Several of these SX70 images were featured in a Polaroid exhibition at Gallery 18 in South Melbourne in 1983. After exhibiting however, Williams found it essential to move to a more detailed, versatile medium.

At Rusden State College Anthony Green introduced Williams to Kodachrome. Renowned for its durability and praised for a unique colour rendition Kodachrome had gratifying and ritualistic properties, similar to that of SX70, but more naturalistic in colour. This positive dye process was the obvious answer to gain further control and versatility. Williams’ Kodachrome era had begun.

After relocating to Milan in 1989 Gallery Diaframma invited Williams to exhibit his Kodachrome work. A solo exhibition of over 50 images entitled A Touch of Colour was mounted. Images from this series were acquired by BP Oil Europe for their collection and selected for projection at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris.

In 1994 Williams began photographing the expanding urban landscape of Melbourne with a large format panoramic camera. The resulting series Life Sanctuary is a forensic study of the changing environs of Melbourne in the 1990s – a series of haunting and highly detailed colour panoramic photographs. This work was initially exhibited as part of Endangered Species, an exhibition curated by Helen Frajman of M33 for Horsham Gallery in 1996. Life Sanctuary was exhibited more comprehensively at the Patrizia Autore Gallery in 2000 and featured on the cover of Photofile No 65. Images from this series were acquired by both The National Gallery of Victoria and The Monash Gallery of Art and were exhibited in Return of the Real at Plimsoll Gallery, Hobart in 2002.