Vox Populi gallery going full-bore in Foto Biennale

ART: Photographer Daniel Kneebone at the gallery above Boah Organics, which will become a permanent exhibition space after the Foto Biennale. PICTURE: Alex Hamer

ART: Photographer Daniel Kneebone at the gallery above Boah Organics, which will become a permanent exhibition space after the Foto Biennale. PICTURE: Alex Hamer

Daniel Kneebone knows a good gallery space when he sees one. 

The photographer, who is a senior photographer and designer at auction house Sotheby’s, has put his show Behind the Curtain at Boah Organic Cafe’s new gallery space, on the first floor of the Bridge Mall shop. 

“It’s been really good to come here and have a professional set-up,” he said. 

Mr Kneebone’s show features burlesque artists, and he was inspired by some artworks he was tasked with photographing for the auction house. 

“I was taking pictures of these art-nouveau statues, and you need to get the best angles of them, they were really beautiful,” he said.

“And then my wife took me to a burlesque show, and there were these performers were just like the statues, beautiful as well.” 

His photographs fill one of the rooms upstairs at Boah with colour contrasting strongly with the other portraits on show. 

Other works include portrait series of Ethiopians and parent-and-teen pairs. 

Once the Biennale finishes on September, many of the venues will go back to their normal state, but Boah will keep upstairs as a gallery. 

Owner Rod McNamara said he and his wife had planned to move in upstairs but thought the lack of a backyard would be too hard to live with. 

So, at the suggestion of their children, Ballarat will have another gallery space. 

“We were thinking about how to utilise the space, how to make something out of it,” he said. 

“The response has been unbelievable.” 

Mr McNamara said getting it all ready was a close-run thing. 

“As the first show was being set-up we were still drilling holes as they were putting their photos up,” he said. 

Thousands of people have gone through the major exhibitions at the Ballarat Mining Exchange and the Art Gallery and also the 120 fringe exhibitions all over town. 

At the launch of gallery in August, director Mark McNamara said their crowdfunding model would open door for artists. 

“We want artists to get a show up even if they don’t have the funds themselves,” he said. 

“The crowdfunding will cover the cost of the space for the artist and the cost of having the show.” 

The 2015 Ballarat International Foto Biennale will run until September 20.