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Unplugged Live: Portrait of an Artist

Missy Higgins
Image courtesy of the artist

 “Being involved in Unplugged has given me the opportunity to bring musicians into the surroundings of great Australian art where I can pay my respects to the two art forms of songwriting and visual art in the one space.” Jae Laffer

A new music, art and conversation series that brings some of Australia’s finest musicians and songwriters into the gallery spaces of the National Gallery of Victoria will be launched this winter. Set amongst the exquisite 19th and 20th Century galleries, musicians and curators will respond to iconic works, exploring the human stories and themes drawn out in the art and in their songs.

Tony Ellwood, Director, NGV said that Unplugged Live: Portrait of an Artist is the latest in the NGV’s evolving music program.

“We have worked closely with some of Australia’s most renowned singers and songwriters to create something unique, celebrating the interconnections between music and art. We are particularly pleased that this series will complement the highly successful Friday Night music series that will continue as part of the Italian Masterpieces exhibition, with Unplugged offering a dedicated focus on Australian art and music in an intimate setting.

Unplugged adds another important dimension to our programming and reinforces our belief that the Gallery is a relevant platform for the celebration and expression of a wide variety of art forms and styles of engagement, with artists on center stage.”

Curated by Jae Laffer of The Panics, Unplugged Live: Portrait of an Artist will showcase ten of the country’s best emerging and established musicians and bands over ten weeks. On Sunday afternoons Laffer and NGV Curators will discuss themes and ideas in iconic works in the Gallery’s 19th and 20th Century Australian Art collection, followed by a live and acoustic performance of a handful of songs by the musicians.  

Jae Laffer said, “Being involved in Unplugged has given me the opportunity to bring musicians into the surroundings of great Australian art where I can pay my respects to the two art forms of songwriting and visual art in the one space.”

“Each week I will lead a discussion of the themes and inspirations behind the songs of a well-loved songwriter, and make comparisons to some of the great Australian visual art on display in the NGV. I want to show that a great song and a great painting are equal and come from a similar place in the heart of an artist,” Laffer said. 

Unplugged Live: Portrait of an Artist will be held in the 19th and 20th Century Australian Art galleries on Level 2 at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, Sundays 2-3pm from 6 July to 7 September, entry is free. #unpluggedngv

Friday Nights at Italian Masterpieces is on at NGV International, Friday evenings from 5.30-9.30pm from 27 June to 29 August, admission fees apply. See ngv.vic.gov.au for further details and bookings. #ItalianMasterpieces

The NGV is grateful for the support of Macquarie Group, Principal Partner of Unplugged Live: Portrait of an Artist.

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Unplugged Live: Portrait of an Artist
Sun 6 Jul – Sun 7 Sep, 2-3pm 
Throughout winter the NGV will host a series of music and conversation set amongst the classics of the 19th and 20th Century Australian art galleries. See some of the most iconic works by Australian artists – from Rupert Bunny to John Brack – in a different light as we explore shared themes between art and music and enjoy a short set of live and intimate performances in the gallery spaces.

  • Sun 6 Jul  Bob Evans
  • Sun 13 Jul  New Gods
  • Sun 20 Jul  Mt Warning  
  • Sun 27 Jul  Melody Pool  
  • Sun 3 Aug Adalita
  • Sun 10 Aug Georgia Fair
  • Sun 17 Aug Glenn Richards
  • Sun 24 Aug Jae Laffer
  • Sun 31 Aug Paul Dempsey
  • Sun 7 Sep Missy Higgins

Cost Free
Venue The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, Level 2
Visit ngv.vic.gov.au for details

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