Jeff Busby is regarded as one of Australia’s leading performance photographers.
Indeed, his work can be found accompanying many of the stage show reviews published on this blog.
The free online exhibition “Framing the Stage: The art of performance photography” aims to provide insights into both the art of photography and the world of the performing arts.
“I thought an important factor in this project was how we were able to cross through time and find a commonality in what these images are trying to tell us,” Busby explains.
“One of the most fascinating aspects was looking at the Australian Performing Arts Collection and the historic sweep of their work and being shown how performance photography has followed the progression of the performing arts in Australia.”
The exhibition was developed during Victoria’s second-wave lockdown in 2020.
“At a time when live performance has been limited, we wanted to remind people of what is so exciting and compelling about the performing arts,” explained Assistant Curator for the Australian Performing Arts Collection, Ian Jackson.
“Performance photography is like capturing lightning in a bottle, the photographer needs to capture a performer, their role, and the feel of the production, all within a single image.”
“We wanted to take our audiences backstage and behind the camera to see Busby’s work – and the photographs in the collection – through his eyes.
“The Australian Performing Arts Collection has a wealth of amazing photographs, covering more than a hundred years of ballet, circus, dance, theatre and opera. We knew that a practising performance photographer like Jeff would bring new insights to them, based on his many years of experience.”
As a result the exhibition explores such themes as what makes a great performance photograph, what it takes to be a performance photographer, and how the evolving story of the performing arts is reflected in the photographic record.
Visit the Framing the Stage website to see the exhibition.
- arts centre melbourne, exhibition
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