We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.

🛈 In line with NSW Health advice, the Art Gallery is temporarily closed to the public. Stay updated on our social media.

Title

Majority rule

2014

Artist

Michael Cook

Australia

1968 –

Language group: Bidjara, North-east region

Alternate image of Majority rule by Michael Cook
Alternate image of Majority rule by Michael Cook
Alternate image of Majority rule by Michael Cook
Alternate image of Majority rule by Michael Cook
Alternate image of Majority rule by Michael Cook
Alternate image of Majority rule by Michael Cook
Alternate image of Majority rule by Michael Cook
  • Details

    Place where the work was made
    Brisbane Queensland Australia
    Cultural origin
    Bidjara, Brisbane, North-east region
    Date
    2014
    Media category
    Photograph
    Materials used
    inkjet print on paper
    Edition
    3/8
    Dimensions
    7 photographs: each 84.0 x 120.0 cm image; 104.0 x 140.0 cm sheet
    Signature & date

    Signed l.l. verso [parts a-g], black fibre-tipped pen within artist's custom stamp "... Michael Cook". Not dated.

    Credit
    Purchased with funds provided by the Aboriginal Collection Benefactors' Group 2014
    Location
    Not on display
    Accession number
    102.2014.a-g
    Copyright
    © Michael Cook

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Michael Cook

    Works in the collection

    1

    Share
  • About

    Michael Cook is a photographer who worked commercially both in Australia and overseas for twenty-five years. In 2009, Cook was drawn into art photography by an increasingly urgent desire to learn about his Aboriginal ancestry and identity. As a child, Cook was adopted and raised by a non-Indigenous family. Although they were not Aboriginal, they were active in their support of Indigenous rights. He said, 'I was raised with a strong understanding of my Aboriginal ancestry thanks to my parents. When I produce art, I feel a stronger connection with my ancestry. This helps me to understand Australian history-in particular, my history.'

    Drawing upon his many years of experience as a photographer within the commercial fashion industry, he employs photographic layering to build his images. Also, he characteristically works in photographic series, his unfolding tableaux offer insolvable narratives which are not prescribed but left open to interpretation.

    'Majority rule' 2014 is a landmark series by Cook in which he creates scenarios as a way of questioning Australian history and the dominance of those in power. Within each work, the character's multiplicity signifies the non-reality of the image created. The works are poignant reminders of the lack of Indigenous representation with Parliament, the judicial system and the business world, as well as the lack of acknowledgement of Indigenous people who have been members of our military.

  • Places

    Where the work was made

    Brisbane

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 3 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 3 publications