Bonita Ely

Australian artist, Dr Bonita Ely’s interdisciplinary artworks typically address environmental and socio-political issues of personal concern. Since her first exhibition in 1972 she has been inventing fantasy personas, insightful mythologies and uncanny, open narratives, often deploying humour, to address the causes and effects of environmental destruction and social dysfunction. Intensive field research underpins her extensive projects, for example, her tracking of the plight of the Murray River since 1975. Public sculptures include Thunderbolt (2010), which signals to the neighborhood their level of power consumption. Representing Australia in documenta 14 in Athens, 2017, Ely exhibited Plastikus Progressus, a futuristic museum display set in 2054. Plastic eating creatures, genetically engineered to clean up pollution in the oceans are contextualised by images (from the past, ie/ NOW) of pristine nature, street litter, plastic rubbish afloat in rivers, our history of wars, invasions, inventions, and an imaginative yet scientifically informative touch screen.  In Kassel, Interior Decoration, addressed the inter-generational affects of PTSD. She is represented in national, international and private collections, is Honorary Associate Professor, Art and Design, UNSW, Sydney, where she is a member of the Environmental Research Initiative for Art [ERIA]. She is represented by Milani Gallery, Brisbane.

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