‘The Sunbather #2’ belongs to a series in which Zahalka explores and subverts the mythology that has evolved around Australia’s iconic beach identity. The Australian beach has long been regarded as a national symbol, often animated by the bronzed bodies of white settler inhabitants. This work directly references Max Dupain’s photograph ‘Sunbaker’ (1937), aiming to explore diversity through playful, vibrant appropriations that challenge traditional representations of the beach.
“The series ‘Bondi: playground of the Pacific’ evolved from a six month residency at the Bondi pavilion. The project looked at Bondi’s status as a significant cultural site and questioned the dominant representations that mythologise and embody it.” Anne Zahalka
Anne Zahalka is one of Australia’s most highly regarded photo-media artists having exhibited extensively in Australia and overseas for more than thirty years. Her works are held in major public collections including National Gallery of Australia, Art Gallery of New South Wales, National Portrait Gallery, Canberra, Australian Bicentennial Collection, Parliament House, Canberra, National Gallery of Victoria, Sir Elton John Collection, Deutsche Bank Collection, International Polaroid Collection, USA, and Visart, New York. She has been included in milestone international exhibitions such as a solo show at the Australian Embassy in Washington; Three Australian Photographers: Bill Henson, Tracey Moffatt and Anne Zahalka, at GEM/Fotomuseum in The Netherlands, Supernatural Artificial at the Chulalangkorn Art Centre in Bangkok, and the Metropolitan Museum of Photography in Tokyo.