Guido Van Helten recently stopped by his hometown of South Brisbane in Australia where he was invited to paint for the Pillars Project.
As usual with the Australian street artist, he spent a few days working on this stunning monochromatic portrait.
The content and theme of the work was based on a collaboration with Historian/Artist and Archive curator Michael Aird from Keeaira Publishing and the Queensland museum. The work displays a portrait of an unidentified woman who was part of an dance group formed by Archibald Meston from a variety of people from the Northern Territory, North Queensland and the Torres Straight, who travelled down to Brisbane in 1892 under the performance title of ‘Wild Australia.’ The group spent three months training in Brisbane in 1892 where they were photographed here on the banks of the Brisbane river. After travelling south to Melbourne financial backing was withdrawn and the group spent six months until they could get back to Brisbane in July 1893. Michael is currently researching this story together with these photographs for an upcoming exhibition project at the Queensland Museum early next year, through which it is hoped will begin the discussion in discovering family connections to these people and what happened to them. –Guido Van Helten
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