Artist crucifies Church abusers in new exhibition
Blue Mountains artist Adam James K has responded to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, in a new exhibition opening at Platform Gallery on 9 February. In Public Stoning of a Paedophile Priest Adam uses painting, drawing, mixed-media, sculpture, video, and performance, to create a conversation about the pain of the abused and the lack of remorse displayed by the abusers within the church.
“My inspiration came from the abuse that was inflicted on children by priests and then covered up by the church,” said Adam. “I was inspired to do something and I wanted to make sure that society does not forget the pain that has been inflicted on these children, and the pain that never leaves them.”
Over the past four years, Adam has created more than 300 artworks, inspired by his listening to testimony from the Royal Commission, and working with survivors to hear their stories.
“I was struck by the lack of remorse so many of the priests showed for the victims. In some of my works, I’ve used elements from the church, such as gold, glitter, and rhinestones, to surround the images of pain, to highlight the hypocrisies of the institution,” said Adam.
Kelly Heylen, curator of Platform Gallery, said “The Royal Commission was necessarily about the abusers and those who covered up the abuse, but the question remains – what about the children? What Adam has done is fill this gap by focusing on the victims’ pain and the lifelong consequences they have suffered. It is a call for empathy and understanding.”
“The content of this exhibition is confronting and moving, yet the work itself is beautiful. I am so pleased to be able to show such a powerful exhibition here in the Blue Mountains, and to work with an artist of Adam’s caliber. I opened Platform Gallery less than a year ago, and already we have a reputation for showing work that promotes progressive social and environmental agendas, of which I am immensely proud.”
Adam James K’s work is in the permanent collections of the Art Gallery of New South Wales, National Portrait Gallery, National Library of Australia, Monash Gallery of Art, Gold Coast City Art Gallery, Tweed River Regional Gallery, and The Museum for the Study of Political Graphics, Los Angeles, USA.
Public Stoning of a Paedophile Priest is showing from 9 February to 4 March at Platform Gallery in Civic Place, Katoomba. Opening night is from 5.30pm on 9 February.