Born in Brisbane in 1960, Tracey Moffatt studied visual communications at the Queensland College of Art, from which she graduated in 1982. Since her first solo exhibition at the Australian Centre for Photography in Sydney in 1989, Moffatt has exhibited extensively in museums all over the world. She first gained significant critical acclaim when her short film Night Cries: A Rural Tragedy was selected for official competition at the 1990 Cannes Film Festival. Her first feature film, beDevil, was also selected for Cannes in 1993. In 1997, she was invited to exhibit in the Aperto section of the Venice Biennale. A major exhibition of Moffatt’s work – Tracey Moffatt: Free-Falling – was later held at the Dia Center for the Arts in New York in 1997–98 which consolidated her international reputation.
Major survey exhibitions of Moffatt’s work have been held at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney (2003–4), the Hasselblad Centre in Göteburg, Sweden (2004), the Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide (2011), the Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane (2014) and the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney (2016). In 2006, she had her first retrospective exhibition Tracey Moffatt: Between Dreams and Reality in Italy, at Spazio Oberdan, Milan. In 2007 a major monograph, The Moving Images of Tracey Moffatt by Catherine Summerhayes was published by Charta Publishers, Milan. A solo survey exhibition featuring all seven video montage works at the Museum of Modern Art, New York opened in May 2012. In 2016, Christine Macel curated Moffatt’s montage film Love in Prospectif Cinéma at the Centre Pompidou, Paris. She has been selected for the Biennales of Gwangju, Prague, São Paulo, Sharjah, Singapore and Sydney.
Moffatt was the recipient of the 2007 Infinity Award for Art by the International Center of Photography, New York honouring her outstanding achievement in the field of photography. Her work is held in major international collections including the Australian National Gallery, Canberra; Brooklyn Museum of Art, New York; Guggenheim Museum, New York; Moderna Museet, Stockholm; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, Tokyo; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Tate Gallery, London. In 2016 Moffatt was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for distinguished service to the visual and performing arts as a photographer and filmmaker, and as a mentor and supporter of, and role model for Indigenous artists.
Image credit: Kate Ballis.