Straylian Summer Guy James Whitworth
Images: Guy James Whitworth.

‘Joyous celebration of diversity’: New art exhibition to challenge Sydney

Sydney visual artist Guy James Whitworth is presenting more of his unique and provocative work in a brand-new exhibition.

As the COVID-19 pandemic and its various effects continue to unfold, Whitworth’s exhibition ‘Enough of your Nonsense’ promises daring visuals and inspiring social commentary in his study of recent events.

“I believe all of the events over the last nine months are connected,” said Whitworth.

“From the catastrophic bushfires, a direct effect of climate warming and agricultural mismanagement, to the Black Lives Matter movement, all oppression is linked, and what we are seeing is a disconnect on the world around us.

“Whilst art cannot fix these problems alone, it can raise awareness of cognitive dissonance and coax us out of our denial.”

Award-winning Whitworth anticipates that his latest work, reflecting on Australian culture and current events, will propel him from “LGBTIQ artist” to mainstream recognition.

He has previously been the subject of several documentaries, including A Queer Aesthetic, which screened at film festivals around the world.

Wielding a paintbrush as a weapon for social change, the artist said he strives to use his platform to help others, with all his past exhibitions championing social causes.

“I’m old enough to remember when queer people struggled for any kind of representation and respect… I remember clearly how shit that felt,” Whitworth told Pink Advocate.

“Although the world is changing, there is still so much work to be done.

“The representation of minorities and the active depiction and joyous celebration of diversity in my work is very important to me.”

His paintings often incorporate the trans and Aboriginal flags, as well as the colours of the rainbow progress flag.

“This to me is such an important visual to put out into the world to encourage change for the better,” Whitworth said.

“I’m a white cis male, and frustratingly, the reality is I do have leverage and power within society because of those labels.

“However, I always endeavour to use my powers for good and for encouraging the acceptance of those who may have less power and representation within a culture that needs that ongoing push towards change.

“Even as a white male, I – and all of us – benefit from that change as the world becomes a more loving, accepting, and utterly fabulous place.”     

Enough of your Nonsense’ promises to be Whitworth’s latest explosion of energy, social rebellion, and passion.

The exhibition runs from Wednesday 2 September to Tuesday 8 September, 12 noon to 8 pm daily, at The M2 Gallery, 4/450 Elizabeth Street, Sydney.

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