Inspired to make her mark in the New York art world
ONE of Australia's most avant-garde and successful artists, who over the years has divided her creative spirit between her Castaways Beach hideaway and a New York loft, has been honoured today with an Order of Australia.
Tracey Moffatt has received her Australia Day honour for distinguished service to the visual and performing arts as a photographer, filmmaker, mentor of, and role model to indigenous artists.
Ms Moffatt, who bought a Gabriel Poole-designed beach house in Noosa, has had more than 100 solo exhibitions worldwide, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York, The Tate Gallery, London, and the National Gallery of Australia.
She was born in Brisbane in 1960 and studied visual communications at the Queensland College of Art, graduating in 1982. Her artworks include photography and filmography, with her most notable works including several series of photographs titled Something More (1989), Pet Thang (1991), Scarred for Life (1994) and Spirit Landscapes (2013).
Ms Moffatt's films have also featured at the Cannes Film Festival in France. She was a founding member of the Boomalli Aboriginal Co-Operative in 1987, which actively encourages indigenous artists, and was the Australia Council's Laureate Artist of the Year in 2013.
Ms Moffatt also has received the Infinity Award for Excellence in Art Photography from the International Centre for Photography, New York, in 2007 and was awarded an honorary doctorate from the Griffith University in 2004. In previous media interviews, the artist has revealed it was memories of childhood beach holidays that stirred when she laid eyes on the house for sale at Castaways Beach in Noosa.
"I was homesick for the Australian nature I grew up with," she said in one interview.
She spoke of "long, hot summers spent on Bribie Island and the Sunshine Coast, with the freedom of roaming barefoot all day long and coming home at sundown".
"I couldn't believe my eyes when I found a Poole house for sale right by the beach. I jumped at the chance to get it."