11 Oct 2017 — 14 Oct 2017

14 October (Workshop) 2pm-4pm


VENUE: Rayner Hoff Project Space, National Art School

Anxious Places is an exhibition by Australian artist Dr Ella Dreyfus, known for confronting photographs which explore place, meaning and memory.

Anxious Places is a photographic exhibition that depicts colourful, emotive words in anonymous suburban environments, revealing the language of childhood trauma in places where family tensions often remain shamefully concealed ‘behind closed doors’.

Exploring childhood abuse and family disturbances, Ella’s photographs depict hundreds of hand-stitched felt alphabet letters placed in domestic settings such as a bedroom, a kitchen and  or a child’s playhouse. The photographs aim to depict the feelings, thoughts and spoken words of those who inhabit these silent interior and exterior landscapes.

Through Anxious Places, the artist investigates commonplace yet hard to accept, behaviours and emotions, in order to reduce shame and anxiety.

Anxious Places workshop by Dr Ella Dreyfus 14 October: 2pm-4pm.

In a two hour workshop, Dr Ella Dreyfus guides you through a creative process that uses photographs, together with visualisations and writing exercises.

You will be lead on a tour of the National Art School, site of the old Darlinghurst Gaol, with access to many hidden areas of the campus, learning about this important and troubled site of Sydney’s former penal colony.

Participants have the opportunity to explore the idea of place and the meanings, memories and feelings we attribute to certain locations, in particular places with layered personal and collective histories.

Co-produced with Professor Katherine Boydell (Black Dog Institute).

Supported by National Art School.

Artist Biography

Ella Dreyfus

ella dreyfus headshot

Dr Ella Dreyfus is an Australian artist, academic and Head of Public Programs at the National Art School, Sydney, known for her confronting photographic exhibitions The Body Pregnant, Age and Consent, Transman, Under Twelve Under Twenty, Scumbag, I forgive you every day and Intimate Distance.

She was an Artist-in-Residence at the Cite Internationale des Artes, Paris in 2013; awarded a Visual Arts in Culture Research Residency at the Banff Centre, Canada in 2014; and the Kunstverein Bellevue Saal Scholarship Residence at the Kunsthaus Wiesbaden in 2017. Her recent exhibition Walking in Wiesbaden was shown at the Aktives Museum Spiegelgasse, Germany.

Katherine Boydell

katherine boydell headshot

Dr. Boydell is a Professor of Mental Health at The Black Dog Institute, UNSW. Her research focuses on understanding complex pathways to care for young people experiencing first episode psychosis, the use of new technologies in child and youth mental health, and the ‘science’ of knowledge translation. To that end, she advances qualitative inquiry in arts-based health research. She has published more than 200 journal articles and her text Hearing Voices: Qualitative Inquiry in Early Psychosis represents the first compendium to focus on qualitative inquiry in this field. Recent projects focus on the use of body mapping to share the experiences of youth with psychosis, the general public’s experience of anxiety, and the experience of anxiety and depression in pre-teens.