– Highlights


Primavera 2016

29 Sep - 04 Dec


Louise Hearman

29 Sep - 04 Dec

Mca Collection

MCA Collection: Today Tomorrow Yesterday

01 Sep - 31 Aug

– Learning Events

Special Event

Learn and Grow

27 Oct, 2.00pm, Level 3: National Centre for Creative Learning

Special Event

ARTBAR October 2016

28 Oct, 7.00pm, MCA

25 Birthday Weekend

Artist Talk

11 Nov, 1.30pm, Level 2: Veolia Lecture Theatre

– News from inside the MCA

Fairfield Eating Excursion

Women of Fairfield co-curator and PYT Artistic Director, Karen Therese takes us on a food safari through Fairfield, Sydney. more

Please Touch: Tactile Tours for Families

Artist Educator, Brook Morgan gives us a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the development of this new program for families. more

Interview with September film curator Adrian Martin

James Vaughan speaks to Australian arts critic and audiovisual artist Adrian Martin about the month of contemporary Portuguese cinema he has guest curated for the MCA more

– Spotlights from the collection online

MCA Collection

Works from the MCA Collection

Collection Artist Interviews

Watch our latest interviews in the MCA Video Portal

Joint acquisitions by MCA and Tate

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


Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA)


19 Dec 2012 to 24 Feb 2013


Jompet, Elaine Campaner, Bindi Cole, Juan Davila, Jimmy Durham, Leah Gordon, Alicia Henry, Ricardo Idagi, Alfredo Jaar, Anton Kannemeyer, Maria Kozic, Glenn Ligon, Ana Mendieta, Tracey Moffatt, Gary Hillberg, Ken Reinhard, Yal Ton (Eric Bridgeman)

Curator: Brook Andrew

about the exhibition

TABOO was an exhibition and program of talks, performances and film screenings by guest curator Brook Andrew. Brook is an artist and cultural commentator of Wiradjuri and Scottish descent, who has a keen interest in hidden histories and ethnography.

TABOO built upon the ground-breaking blakatak series of talks and performances that Brook curated for the MCA in 2005. The concept of blakatak was to give space within the Museum for lively debate surrounding issues of concern to Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists, thinkers and activists. It touched on sometimes controversial topics, providing a forum for these ideas to be expressed and accommodated often highly divergent points of view.

TABOO brought together Australian and international artists who respond to ideas around race, ethnicity, politics and religion. Newly commissioned and existing works sat alongside personal archives, postcards, press photography and works from the MCA Collection. TABOO attempted to represent fragments of history, narrative and memory through art works and contextual materials that, when juxtaposed, can create a powerful and emotional effect.

TABOO took on issues that may be hidden or distorted in the mainstream media; ideas that transgress what is considered to be ‘correct behaviour’; and the question of who can represent whom. Brook Andrew said, ‘Taboos are similar to social and religious rules of engagement, but their principal task is to separate one space from another. They mark off a person, place or thing as sacred and untouchable: as distinct from the ordinary, mundane, and by implication, the polluted, unclean, or infidel. One of the intentions of the exhibition [was] that artists should feel free to relate their own versions of taboos, or play with a taboo and trigger the possibility of a different story. This story might reveal new ways of seeing a history or subject that would otherwise be shut down as too upsetting or controversial.’

The exhibition included images dealing with deceased people, nudity, religious beliefs and historical material that reflected different social times when issues like racism were not so widely debated. The aim of TABOO was to create a space to try out new ways of seeing our world through different juxtapositions.

Featuring Works from the MCA Collection

Gary Hillberg
  • Lip
Maria Kozic
  • Bitch

In the Shop