About face (2020) is a limited edition artwork by artist Archie Moore. Purchase your edition via the IMA Gallery Shop here.
Drawing on the materiality his previous series Flags of Convenience, Archie Moore marks a point of conjecture to a global political discourse with About face (2020). Noted as a military drill command, the term about-face suggests a change in direction from our current course, an open provocation to consider how we collectively navigate through difficult times. Facial masks have become a contemporary icon of late, however, their prominence has also highlighted how they are seen as a subtle barrier between us. Whether obscuring identity and therefore identity politics, or hindering verbal communication, the intent of connection is often deterred by the same political fears which historically separate us. Archie Moore reminds us that one person’s safety could be another person’s harm and until we understand each other’s experiences, we will continue to wear our own mask.
Photographs and video produced by Charlie Hillhouse
Archie Moore, About face, 2020, acrylic paint, edition of 10.
Archie Moore works across various media to share portrayals of self and of contested national histories. He questions key signifiers of identity—skin, language, smell, food, home, flags, politics, religion—as well as the borders of intercultural understanding and misunderstanding. His practice is embedded in the wider concerns of racism. Uncertainty is an ongoing theme related to his paternity and Kamilaroi heritage.
Over the past two decades Moore has been included in major exhibitions including Defying Empire: 3rd National Indigenous Art Triennial, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra (2017); The National, Carriageworks, Sydney (2017); and the 20th Biennale of Sydney, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney (2016). Recently, he presented a major solo exhibition at Griffith University Art Museum, Brisbane, and was commissioned to create a permanent flag installation for the T1 International Terminal at Sydney Airport (2018). His work has been included in group exhibitions at Australian Parliament House, Canberra (2018); NAS Galleries, Sydney (2016); The University of Queensland, Brisbane (2013); Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane (2013); Auckland Art Gallery, Auckland (2014); and Museum of Contemporary Art (2009). His work is held in numerous collections across Australia.
Moore completed a Bachelor of Visual Arts in 1998 and received the 2018 Creative Industries Faculty Outstanding Alumni Award both at the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane. In 2001 he was awarded the Millennial Anne & Gordon Samstag International Visual Arts Scholarship, through which he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague.