Four Sunbathers, Lorne c.1968


11 December 2015 — 28 February 2016

Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery
Civic Reserve, Dunns Road
Mornington, Victoria 3931
Free entry to exhibition

"On the Beach" considers the place of the beach within Australian life. A public space of recreation and leisure the beach epitomises the liberties of Australia’s democratic society. While in the lead up to Federation many 19th century artists looked to the bush to galvanise a fledging nationalism, by the mid-20th century this had shifted and increasingly the beach became the site of Australian identity. The exhibition considers this history in light of the Cronulla race riots. 2015 marks the 10th anniversary of the riots and provides an opportunity for reflection about these events and the significance of the beach as the place where tensions boiled over. 

Bringing together over 75 works, including paintings and photographs by some of Australia’s acclaimed Modernists, together with works by contemporary artists, the exhibition considers the ways in which people relate to the beach, its place in understandings of national identity and its history as a contested site.

Includes works by Arthur Boyd, Gordon Bennett, Daniel Boyd, George Caddy, Max Dupain, Rennie Ellis, Tracey Moffatt, David Moore, Sidney Nolan, Polixeni Papapetrou, John Perceval,



Pass~Port Decks

Pass~Port Skateboards A collaboration with the Rennie Ellis Photographic Archive

The Pass~Port and Rennie Ellis Archive collaboration celebrates the work of an iconic Australian photographer, and shares it with a diverse audience of skateboarders, creatives and admirers.

When Trent Evans, founder of Pass~Port, first came across Rennie’s work, he felt an immediate connection to the people, places and moments documented. The youthfulness, playfulness, and unique Australianness of each image echoed the spirit Trent has channeled in Pass~Port since the brand’s inception. The collaboration of skateboards and apparel is intended as a reminder to a younger generation to go out and be daring, explore and push the envelope; just like Rennie.

We live in a time not unlike before. A moment where change is on our nose and solidarity is more important than ever. The freedom echoing in Rennie’s work should reflect our current spirit. Attitudes still need to change. It is still a time to pioneer and continue to define our cultural identity, with soul, honesty and, of course, the whole of community. Nadia Hernandez 2015