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Australian art

Contemporary art

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Easter Island



Mike Parr


1945 -


Mike Parr was one of the small group of conceptual artists that formed Inhibodress in Sydney in the early 1970s. It was a time when radical artists around the world were in contact with each other, sharing ideas and organising events, although the infrastructure was not yet in place for the incorporation of the avant-garde into the institutions of art. It was also a time when artists world-wide were politicised by Vietnam and the temperature of their work was often intense.

Against this background Parr travelled to work in Europe, where he came to know many of the leading conceptualists along with members of Fluxus and the Vienna Aktionists group in Austria. Although his work is incredibly diverse - performance and body art, drawing, printmaking, text-works, film, staged photography, minimal sculpture and figurative bronzes - the underlying structures remain the same. His self-portrait project is one that attempts to map the interactions of mind and body, the conscious and the unconscious.

It is not a solipsistic search for the self but rather an attempt to explore the human condition and how the personal informs the political. The basis of all these forms is performative; since the inception of the genre in the 16th century, self-portraits have always been some kind of performance as the artist attempts to project his or her place in the world.




Media category


Materials used

99 inkjet prints on Spectrum gloss paper


1 + 1 AP


dimensions variable

Signature & date

Not signed. Not dated.


Purchased by the Art Gallery of New South Wales 2014


Not on display

Accession number


Artist information

Mike Parr

Works in the collection


Shown in 1 exhibition

Exhibition history

Referenced in 6 publications


Anna Schwartz Gallery, Sydney, Mike Parr: Easter Island, 'Mike Parr: Easter Island', Sydney, 2013, n.pag. (colour illus.). exhibition brochure

Elizabeth Fortescue, Daily Telegraph, 'Portraits of the artist unmellowed', pg. 83, Sydney, 15 Nov 2013, 83.

Andrew Frost.,, 'Mike Parr: Easter Island - review', Sydney, 11 Dec 2013, n.pag. (colour illus., detail). viewed 07.04.2014,

Sammy Preston., Broadsheet Media, 'Mike Parr's Easter Island Portraits', Melbourne, 25 Nov 2013, n.pag. (colour illus., detail). viewed 07.04.2014,

Andrew Taylor.,, 'An uneasy island adventure with performance artist Mike Parr', Sydney, 15 Nov 2013, n.pag. (colour illus., detail). viewed 07.04.2014,

Michael Young.,, 'Mike Parr Easter Island', New York, Unknown, n.pag. (colour illus., detail). viewed 07.04.2014,