Natalya Hughes

Natalya Hughes' practice is concerned with decorative and ornamental traditions and their associations with the feminine, the body and excess. Recent bodies of work investigate the relationship between Modernist painters and their anonymous women subjects.

‘I was never enthralled by that thick, expressionist painting style in the same way that other people seem to be; I’ve always been a very flat, neat painter’ ... ‘I was drawn to [de Kooning and Kirchner] not because they have a decorative aesthetic ... [but] because I wondered what would happen if I brought that aesthetic to [the same subject]. Those artists would have loathed me to do that, I’m sure.’

Natalya recently completed the Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art Open Studio – a four-month residency at the gallery that provides visitors with unique insights into how the artist works, and more specifically how they experiment, manipulate and refine materials and processes. Natalya Hughes is the second of five contemporary Australian artists to feature at Open Studio. 

Natalya Hughes will have her first solo show with Sullivan+Strumpf in September 2020.

Hughes was a finalist in both the Sulman Prize at Art Gallery of NSW  and the National Works on Paper Prize at Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery in 2018, as well as the 2017 Ramsay Art Prize at Art Gallery of South Australia. Her work has been included in institutional exhibitions such as Queensland Art Gallery|Gallery of Modern Art (2019, 2017 and 2012), QUT Art Museum Brisbane (2016), Artspace Sydney (2016), Hazelhurst Regional Gallery (2015), Performance Space (2012), Parliament House Canberra (2014), UQ Art Museum, Brisbane (2010), Ian Potter Museum of Art, Melbourne (2009) and Tarrawarra Museum of Art, VIC (2006). Hughes completed a Bachelor of Visual Arts at the Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane in 2001 and a PhD in Art Theory at the College of Fine Art (UNSW) in 2009. She currently lives in Brisbane and lectures in Fine Art and Expanded Practice at the Queensland College of Art.

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