Phwweeeeeeeeeeeiiiippp… with the shrill of a whistle, men, women, boys and girls race to be the first to gain possession of the ball, all across Australia. Within the overarching umbrella of football in this country, Footy Fever seeks to represent the wildly varying connections that artists have with Aussie Rules, Rugby League, Rugby Union, Soccer, and Wheelchair Rugby. For those that complain they don’t know the rules, or what differentiates one code from the other, imagine how ridiculous it is for those looking in on the art world. By mingling the smell of grass and linen, sweat and paint, Footy Fever aims to connect with a far broader audience, and dispel the perceived elitism of contemporary art and the mindlessness of football. The exhibition explores the way artists engage with the sport through themes of sexuality, belief, belonging, history, nostalgia, religion, war, dedication and fandom, and declares football’s enduring relevance in the world of art.
The exhibition will bring together work from established, emerging and outsider artists, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous, including Shoeb Ahmad, Alex Asch, Jon Cattapan, Mariana del Castillo, Dinni Kunoth Kemarre, Julian Laffan, Richard Lewer, James Lieutenant, Glenn Morgan, Louise Paramor, Meta Rothery, Daniel Savage, David Spooner and Theo Tremblay. Photography by Brenton McGeachie