– Highlights

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Mca Collection

MCA Collection: Today Tomorrow Yesterday

01 Sep - 31 Dec

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Exhibition

Jenny Watson

05 Jul - 02 Oct

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Exhibition

Hilarie Mais

23 Aug - 19 Nov

– Learning Events

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Event

Engaging Students with disability

18 Aug, 9.00am, Level 3: National Centre for Creative Learning

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Workshop

Art Safari

25 Aug, 10.30am, Level 3: National Centre for Creative Learning

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Special Event

ARTBAR August 2017

25 Aug, 7.00pm, MCA

– News from inside the MCA

Claudia Nicholson's ARTBAR of love and devotion

July’s ARTBAR will see the MCA turned into an elaborate quinceañera by this month’s curator, Claudia Nicholson. more

#ConversationStarters: Have you ever made a decision based on fear?

We held a new program of art and ideas, Conversation Starters, in June to promote an open conversation with questions that define our global situation. more

#ConversationStarters: What are you afraid of for the future?

We held a new program of art and ideas, Conversation Starters, in June to promote an open conversation with questions that define our global situation. more

– Spotlights from the collection online

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MCA Collection

Works from the MCA Collection

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Collection Artist Interviews

Watch our latest interviews in the MCA Video Portal

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Joint acquisitions by MCA and Tate

The Program promotes Australian art globally, helping Australian artists reach new audiences.

Stephen Birch

Born 1961, Melbourne. Lived and worked Sydney. Died 2007, Sydney.


Stephen Birch primarily worked in sculpture. He was concerned with developing sculptural language, drawing inspiration from the natural world and figurative tradition to work against the prevailing aesthetic of abstraction. Birch’s sculptures and installations employ everyday forms in an attempt to unsettle our sense of the comfortable or familiar. Playing with scale and context and using a range of materials that draw attention to the production process, his works draw audiences into eerie yet humorous parallel worlds, where linear readings become frustrated and the borders between reality and illusion are blurred.

Towards the end of his life, Birch began to investigate the human form in works that ranged from heads cast from artist colleagues to the figure of Spiderman. The artist distorted the figure, so that it slipped out of direct representation or portraiture and entered into a psychological realm, tapping into repressed fears, desires or anxieties. In the process Birch explored aspects of contemporary life, drawing on popular culture and mass media as well as art and literature. The figure of Spiderman, for example, confronts viewers with a character from our collective imagination which is superhuman yet ordinary, as invented as it is real.

Birch’s work was the subject of a survey exhibition and publication, Looking Out My Back Door, at the MCA, Sydney in 2007. He had solo exhibitions in Sydney, Auckland, Wellington and Melbourne throughout his career.

Works by Stephen Birch

– In the MCA Collection online

– View also

All
Works

Related Exhibitions