Robyn Stacey is one of Australia’s most acclaimed photographers. Her large and striking images have been exhibited widely in Australia and internationally since the mid 1980s. The early cinematic series, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (1985),Redline 7000 (1987-89), All The Sounds of Fear (1990-1992), and Let It All Come Down (1994 AGNSW) were based on film noir and use the collective archive of photography and film to connect with cultural memory.
This fascination with the possibilities of history to inform our present lead to her current obsession with the vast archival repositories of museums and in 2000, Stacey began researching and photographing natural history collections in Australia and overseas. Spending a number of years working with each collection Stacey’s pictorially sumptuous photographic images present the eighteenth and nineteenth century specimens, artifacts, and scientific models to a contemporary audience, revealing their aesthetic, social and historical value. Investigating each specimen’s material presence she groups and assembles them based on visual strategies drawn from the Dutch still life tradition to the scientific rationalism of taxonomy.
Stacey is the recipient of major awards and research grants, including a number of Visual Arts Board grants and University research grants and was awarded a Samstag Scholarship (1994) to study at the School of Visual Arts in New York. Her artist residencies include the Macleay Museum at Sydney University 2004-6, University of Leiden, Netherlands 2003-06, the Historic Houses Trust of New South Wales 2002-ongoing, the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney 2001-3, and the National Center for Supercomputuing Applications at the University of Illinois 1993.
Stacey’s works are held in the collections of the National Gallery of Australia, National Portrait Gallery, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Art Gallery of Western Australia, National Gallery of Victoria, Art Gallery of South Australia, Queensland Art Gallery, and Artbank, as well as numerous university, corporate and private collections.
Her work is studied as part of the New South Wales and Victorian High School Curriculum in the units: visual design, visual art, digital media, and photography. Robyn Stacey has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Queensland, a Master of Fine Arts from the University of New South Wales and is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Communication Arts at the University of Western Sydney. Stacey is currently a member of the Visual Arts Board (2006-2008) of the Australia Council.