Under Twelve ACD 2005
Open daily from 10am-5pm
Exhibition suitable for people of all ages
Opening night launch
Wednesday 23 Oct , 6 - 8pm
Artist's talk Sunday 27 Oct, 3 - 4pm
Panel discussion Sunday 3 Nov, 3 -4 pm. Guest speakers media professor Catharine Lumby and photographer Paul McDonald
Under Twenty-Seven was also shown at
Watt Space Gallery, Newcastle, NSW Australia
A Head On Photo Festival Featured Exhibition
1 - 26 May, 2019
Under Twenty-Seven is the third in a series of photographic portraits following a group of young men every seven years, observing them as they evolve from childhood into early adulthood and beyond. This is a new chapter in an iconic project that began with Under Twelves at Ground Floor Gallery in 2005, followed by Under Twelves, Under Twenty at Stills Gallery in 2012, to its latest iteration Under Twenty-Seven to be exhibited in 2019.
The black and white images depict the development of the boys into young men in a remarkably poignant manner, addressing concepts of masculinity and representation and make a unique contribution to photographic portraiture in Australia.
The boys were team-mates in a local soccer club and Ella Dreyfus is the mother of one of them. She acknowledges her privileged position as a witness to the subtle and sensitive changes they are undergoing throughout their lives. After years of watching her son and his friends playing on the soccer fields, I knew I had to photograph them as they approached the end of primary school and began the huge change from boyhood into adolescence. So with the permission of the parents she made studio portraits of each boy at age 11 or 12, and held the first exhibition Under Twelve in 2005.
Under Twelves was created at a key moment of transition, when the team of boys were leaving primary school and “hovering on the cusp of childhood and adolescence, traversing both the masculine and feminine worlds” (Dreyfus, 2005).
The second series Under Twelve, Under Twenty showed the same group, after they finished high school and had grown into dignified young men. In 2018 Dreyfus tracked down all the men to create the third series Under Twenty-Seven for exhibition in 2019, as the men reach their mid-twenties and are in another fascinating phase of life.
Now they are 25 and Dreyfus has photographed them again. She enjoyed meeting them at this age and all the original 14 returned for a new portrait with great enthusiasm for the project and far more interest than when they were younger. She aim photographs them in the same pose every seven years and believes that the images reveal aspects of themselves that they don't necessarily see, especially their sensitive, quieter sides. As the artist/mother/feminist she is committed to giving men a safe place to be vulnerable and beautiful, to have this recorded and witnessed by others. So far, they trust her to do this.
The subjects have given their consent for the portraits to be exhibited and Dreyfus sincerely hopes that audiences will celebrate their courage and pride. She states “They are simple portraits with no agenda other than to invite people to look with wonder and awe at these beautiful young men” (Sun-Herald, 2012).
A great interview with Ella Dreyfus and Mark Rorke on Newcastle University radio station 2NURFM on 1 May 2019
Newcastle Herald journalist Jim Kellar writes " Leading photographer Dreyfus updates emotive portrait series of 14 boys" on 1 May 2019
"Photographer captures soccer team growing up" said NBN TV journalist Lauren Kempe in her interview with Ella Dreyfus as her exhibition Under Twenty-Seven was being installed at Watt Space Gallery
Radio National's Michael McKenzie interviews Ella Dreyfus, her subject Sebastian Duggan and renowned psychologist Steve Biddulph on national program Life Matters on 3 May 2019
Capture Magazine ran an article about Under Twenty Seven in their online publication in May 2019
Under Twenty-Seven Exhibitions
1 – 26 May, 2019 Watt Space Gallery, Newcastle
22 October – 3 November, 2019 Bondi Pavilion Gallery, Sydney