We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land, the Gai-mariagal Peoples.  We pay our respects to the Elders past and present.

First Nations People should be aware that this website may contain images or names of people who have since passed away.

Sun 19 June, 10:00am to 5:00pm

Manly Art Gallery & Museum West Esplanade Reserve
Manly NSW 2095

Being Manly seeks to unsettle colonial narratives of masculinity by playfully deconstructing popular iconography and histories related to Manly’s cultural identity. By subverting these narratives using the presence of Indigenous figures, Bain shifts our perception of Manly’s cultural identity away from being a strictly white construct to imply the continued presence of the traditional custodians of the land. As an Indigenous man, Bain aims to reclaim self-agency in how he identifies with the Manly area where he was born and raised.

Billy Bain explores representations of Australian masculinity through taking perceptions of the Australian male and playfully deconstructing them. By interrogating and subverting representations of the Australian male in both popular culture and the everyday suburban life he exists within, Bain seeks to create works that humour our Australian sense of identity. By poking fun at perceptions of who he is meant to be, Bain reclaims power and autonomy over his sense of identity as an Darug man.

Bain’s interpretation of suburban life is subtly autobiographic, with each of his characters embodying a piece of the artist’s personal experiences. His work transcends both the celebratory and the critical. This is communicative of his inner conflict when navigating the dualities of being a young Indigenous man in a community and country where Indigenous identity and representation has been systematically denied.

Billy Bain completed a Bachelor of Fine Art in 2019, graduating with first class honours from the University of New South Wales. He is currently based on Sydney’s Northern Beaches where he creates work from his home studio.


Friday, 25th March to Sunday, 19th June 2022


Cost: Free

Enquiries Contact:  Katherine Roberts – Senior Curator

Enquiries Email:  artgallery@northernbeaches.nsw.gov.au

Phone Number:  02 8495 5036

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