Bill Henson: Through the Darkness Creeping

You’ll know a Bill Henson if you’ve seen one – they’re instantly recognisable by the quality of night he captures so effortlessly, by the cast of pre and mid-pubescent waifs nakedly inhabiting an empty, slightly dystopian landscape, by the drama and the everyday richness. John Kachoyan explores the first survey of the photographers work.
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You’ll know a Bill Henson if you’ve seen one – they’re instantly recognisable by the quality of night he captures so effortlessly, by the cast of pre and mid-pubescent waifs nakedly inhabiting an empty, slightly dystopian landscape, by the drama and the everyday richness.

The beauty of Henson’s work lies often in his ability to heighten the mundane, to add tragic energy to a slender nude or to enrich the quality of night and edginess in a darkened portrait. His dramas are casual, not so distant as to be documentarian but enough to give us a sense he is capturing events just beyond our reality, at the border of dreams – events, however, which may just have happened somewhere in the newly-past night. The sense of these immediacies, these dark happenings, is captured perfectly in the first major retrospective of Henson’s work currently on exhibit at the Art Gallery of NSW (AGNSW) and soon to be touring to Victoria.

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John Kachoyan
About the Author
John Kachoyan is a director, writer and actor. He studied at the University of Sydney, University of Toronto and NIDA and has worked in Australia, U.S.A and Canada. John’s directing work includes The Soldier Dreams (Daniel MacIvor), the musical Salad Days (Slade/Reynolds), and new Australian works such as Fresh Food People (Patrick Carr) and Lighthouse (Noni Bousfield). John’s plays have been produced in Toronto (Just For Me - The Actor’s Patch), New York (Just For Me - The Red Room) and in Sydney (The Collectors - NIDA). John was recently offered a place at the prestigious Central School of Speech & Drama for their one-year MA Advanced Theatre Practice course.
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