A major exhibition partnership between three of Sydney’s premier cultural institutions, The National: New Australian Art is a six-year initiative presenting the latest ideas and forms in contemporary Australian art over three editions in 2017, 2019 and 2021.

Closing Weekend Live Program

Curatorial Essay from Carriageworks Director of Programs and National curator Daniel Mudie Cunningham.


Tony Albert, Troy-Anthony Baylis, Eric Bridgeman, Sam Cranstoun, Cherine Fahd, Julie Fragar, Amala Groom, Tara Marynowsky, Mish Meijers & Tricky Walsh, Tom Mùller, Clare Peake, Sean Rafferty, Eugenia Raskopoulos, Luke Roberts, Thom Roberts, Mark Shorter, Nat Thomas, and Melanie Jame Wolf.

Art Gallery of NSW
Robert Andrew, Rushdi Anwar, Peta Clancy, Fayen d’Evie, Nicholas Folland, Tony Garifalakis, Mira Gojak, Andrew Hazewinkel, Amrita Hepi, Eliza Hutchison, Linda Marrinon, Pilar Mata Dupont, Sally M Nangala Mulda, James Newitt, nova Milne, Izabela Pluta, Tom Polo, Koji Ryui, Sandra Selig, and Benita Clements, Noreen Hudson, Kathy Inkamala, Vanessa Inkamala and Mervyn Rubuntja from Itja Ntjarra Many Hands Art Centre.

Museum of Contemporary Art
Lucas Abela, Abdul-Rahman Abdullah, Kylie Banyard, Hannah Brontë, Janet Fieldhouse, Tina Havelock Stevens, Daisy Jupulija, Ms Uhl, Sonia Kurarra & Nada Tjiliga Rawlins, Eugenia Lim, Ross Manning, James Nguyen, Julia Robinson, Curtis Taylor & Ishmael Marika, Teo Treloar, Willoh S. Weiland, Kunmanara (Mumu Mike) Williams, Kaylene Whiskey, and The Unbound Collective: Ali Gumilya Baker, Simone Ulalka Tur, Faye Rosas Blanch and Natalie Harkin.

Agatha Gothe-Snape


The National 2019, Carriageworks, Image Zan Wimberley


This is a free exhibition.

Exhibition open daily

Tom Mùller: Ghost Line
Activations daily, 11am and 4pm

Special 7pm activations for Vivid Sydney: June 8, 9, 13, 14 + 15

Special 6pm activation for Closing Weekend: June 22

Closing Weekend Live Program
22 Jun

Supporting The National at Carriageworks directly enables the space and resources for 18 new commissions by artists and collectives working across video, painting, photography, sculpture and performance. Your contribution will also fund an integrated education and public performance program.

To become a donor for The National, contact Alyson Hewett on +61 2 8571 9062 or alyson.h@carriageworks.com.au.

Support Carriageworks

Presented by Carriageworks, Art Gallery of NSW and Museum of Contemporary Art.

Supported by Major Partner Bloomberg Philanthropies, Media Partner Broadsheet and City of Sydney.

Tony Albert  In 'House of Discards' the artist departs from his unmistakable representational style. Evolving his Aboriginalia project, which refers to his collection of racist kitsch souvenirs from the 1950s, Albert creates a giant house of cards that redacts the visual content in favour of succinct and elegant abstraction between black and white.
Troy-Anthony Baylis  In the series 'Postcards', metallic Glomesh handbags are repurposed to spell out place names while referencing Aboriginal breastplates. With this queer reimagining, Baylis rewrites Indigenous sovereignty by anointing Blak queens.
Cherine Fahd  'Apókryphos', meaning hidden, secret or unknown in Ancient Greek, is a response to a collection of family photos documenting the artist's grandfather’s funeral in 1975.
Julie Fragar  'This is Not a Dress Rehearsal: A Catalogue of Final Options' is a speculative and symbolic self-portrait that imagines death in paint. Fragar offers a humble attempt to decouple fear and mortality.
Mish Meijers & Tricky Walsh  In 'The Crocker Land Expedition', the artists recreate the true story of a failed voyage to find a mythical island that turned out to be a mirage.
Clare Peake  'A Sorcerer’s Dress', is an ongoing work made and remade by the artist from everyday detritus in her studio, elevating and transforming it into a thing of beauty.
Eugenia Raskopoulos  In '(dis)order', a structure is built from discarded domestic appliances and subsequently toppled by the artist. Opposite, the suspended neon sculpture swings like a pendulum of doom.
Luke Roberts  'Mars Rusting' updates Diego Velázquez' painting 'Mars Resting' (1640) depicting Roberts as the god of war, an aged and tragicomic character.
Thom Roberts  Thom Roberts sees people as trains and trains as people. This unique relationship is the basis of his series of portraits 'Thom Roberts Counts Trains', which  loom large in the signage structure at Carriageworks' entrance.
Mark Shorter  'Song for Von Guérard' reimagines a Eugene von Guérard painting of Mount Kosciusko from 1863. During the exhibition the artist will activate the work with fire. More Info.
Melanie Jame Wolf  In 'OH YEAH TONIGHT' Melanie Jame Wolf takes aim at the three most repeated words in pop music: ‘oh’, ‘yeah’, ‘tonight’.
Tom Mùller  'Ghost Line' is a temporal and site specific work that uses fog to reference Carriageworks' former incarnation as the Eveleigh Railway Workshops. Activations daily, 11am and 4pm. Special 6pm activation for Closing Weekend, June 22.        
Amala Groom  'The Union' draws upon lived experiences and Aboriginal ceremonies. Adopting the persona of a displaced bride, the artist uses red rope to navigate and decolonise Country in a performance that reimagines the wedding ritual.
Carriageworks, The National, Contemporary Art, Exhibition
Sean Rafferty  Through his extensive traversing of farming regions across Australia, Sean Rafferty presents 'Cartonography FNQ', a project that maps far North Queensland through the fruit cartons and stories of this region.
Agatha Gothe-Snape  'EVERY ACT OF READING PERFORMS THE WORK' is a monolithic virtual reality sculpture that is the repository of accumulated inquiries into The National and its cultural, interpersonal and historical ambiences. Find the artist's work online here.
Nat Thomas  'Postcards from the Edge' recreates a scene from the Hollywood film of the same name. Audiences are invited to lie down on the platform and simulate hanging on for grim death from a tall building.
Tara Marynowsky  In 'Coming Attractions' Tara Marynowsky ‘defaces’ the female leads of nineties cinema classics such as 'Pretty Woman', by scratching and hand colouring the celluloid surface of found film trailers. The artist creates a humorous feminist response to the backdrop of Trump era politics.
Eric Bridgeman  In 'Sikiram | Büng | Scrum', Bridgeman's shields acknowledge the traditional designs of the artist's homeland in Papua New Guinea while drawing upon the visual language of sport and contemporary abstraction.
Sam Cranstoun  'Utopia' pays homage to and updates the iconic ‘Australia’ sign which was located at the entrance to Brisbane’s World Expo ‘88 - an event that was part of the Australian Bicentenary of European settlement that divided national opinion.