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Justin Williams — Stained Mountain

Justin Williams,  Baba Desi , 2015, oil on paper, 43 x 53cm

Justin Williams, Baba Desi, 2015, oil on paper, 43 x 53cm



Justin Williams creates work that is quietly mystical. It reaches us from a place of subversive beauty, where urban legends and local stories contain strange and wonderful characters. It is these characters that interest and inform a new body of sculptures and paintings, which delve into the mysteries of the mountain where Williams lives and works.

For his upcoming solo exhibition at Anna Pappas Gallery, Justin Williams is presenting an exploration into concepts and constructions of beauty. Stained Mountain investigates people and myths, such as the disappearance and suspected murder of celebrity chef, Willi Koeppen in 1976, and the colourful character known simply as The Wizard of Belgrave, Baba Desi – an activist, humanist and local icon who adorns himself in flowing robes and jewellery.

The beauty within the grotesque interests Williams greatly, weaving through stories that surround these local figures. This idyllic location in the mountain ranges contains sometimes unpleasant, yet always enigmatic figures that exist in an ever-shrinking space, outside of society’s eye.

Raw and honest, Williams is delving into the internal struggle of the duality between light and dark, beauty and hostility, legends and truth; these works are both finished, yet unfinished, as are the people and stories that inform them. His paintings reveal landscapes shimmering in a space between public and hidden worlds; his sculptures speak of characters living within the confines of an almost smothering forest.

Justin Williams holds a Bachelor of Communication and Design, Majoring in Printmaking and Illustration from Swinburn University. He has held numerous solo exhibitions including Viridian, 2014, Anna Pappas Gallery; Mountain I Miss You, 2013, Mild Manner, Brisbane; A Touch of Norway, 2012, Lapis Lazuli Pop Up Factory Gallery, Melbourne. His selected group exhibitions include at the Melbourne Art Fair in 2014; Project 14: Free Range, 2014, Anna Pappas Gallery; Trouble in Paradise, 2012, Paradise Hills Gallery, Melbourne; and Group Show, 2012, Scott Livesey Galleries, Melbourne. He has been featured in Artist Profile, Australian Creative and New York Arts Magazine.

Earlier Event: July 3
Jarek Wojcik — Spaces and Things
Later Event: August 7
Gian Manik — Umbrella