Liam Benson: Virtue Without Stain presents a collection of works, performances, and community-engaged projects by Western Sydney-based artist Liam Benson exploring the intersection of gender, cultural and queer identity.
The exhibition surveys Benson’s photographic work, new media, performances, and embroidery practice. Importantly, Virtue Without Stain includes new collaborative works made with local communities to provide a context for the complexity of Benson’s work that discusses and celebrates contemporary stories, values and cultural experiences.
‘Born, raised, and currently living in Western Sydney, in one of Australia’s most culturally diverse areas, his work holds an unflinching mirror up to who we are as Australians, and in Benson’s case what it is to be a Queer white male of Anglo-Saxon heritage’, says Richard Perram OAM, Curator of the exhibition. ‘Like the American photographer Cindy Sherman, Benson uses himself as the subject of his work. The addition of costume, make-up and text creates unsettling images of great beauty that subtly deal with issues of masculinity, homophobia, gender, and our colonial history.’
Liam Benson: Virtue Without Stain is a BRAG exhibition, curated by Richard Perram OAM.
Liam Benson, Richard Perram OAM, exhibition curator, and Sarah Gurich, BRAG director, are available to interview.
Editor’s note: Liam Benson and exhibition curator Richard Perram OAM both proudly identify as being part of the LGBTIQ+ community.
As an artist who identifies as LGBTIQ+, Liam Benson’s current practice is based around self-portraiture, performance, embroidery, and collaborative work. His works deal with issues surrounding gender and a discussion of what it is to be a white Queer Anglo Saxon male in an increasingly diverse and heterogeneous Australian society.
Benson’s work discusses gender, identity and culture by subverting and cross-referencing entrenched ideologies, popular iconography, art and media language. Liam’s practice is informed through working collaboratively with diverse communities through an ongoing conversation about how culture, subculture and identity interrelate and evolve. Liam Benson has been exhibiting and performing nationally and internationally since 2003 and is represented by Artereal Gallery, Sydney.