Publication Launch: DESTINY

Sat 14 Mar, 3pm–5pm

Past program

Free entry

NGV International

Grollo Equiset Garden
Ground Level

Presented by National Gallery of Victoria

Join us for the launch of DESTINY a monograph celebrating the art and life of artist Destiny Deacon, published by the NGV. Australian artist Destiny Deacon, a Kuku and Erub/Mer (North-East Cape York and Torres Strait) woman, is known for having coined the term ‘blak’, in a reclaiming and recasting of a word with myriad connotations of colonialism and prejudice. Her work sits in the uncomfortable but compelling space halfway between comedy and tragedy. Working across photography, video, printmaking, mixed media and installation, Deacon interrogates the way in which Aboriginal people have been, and continue to be, misrepresented within popular culture.

This publication, edited by Myles Russell-Cook, Curator, Indigenous Art, NGV and curator of the exhibition DESTINY, is the largest in-depth study of Deacon’s practice ever to appear in book form. Through all-blak scholarship, and images of Deacon’s work spanning more than thirty years, we gain a strong sense of Deacon as artist and person, and of her enduring fascination with the human condition

Hear readings from authors Claire Coleman and Kim Kruger and stay for a celebration.


Myles Russell-Cook is Curator of Indigenous Art at the National Gallery of Victoria. He is jointly responsible for the NGV’s collections of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art and the art of Oceania, pre-Hispanic America and Africa. Much of his influence and inspiration comes from his maternal Aboriginal heritage in Western Victoria with connections into Tasmania and the Bass Strait Islands.

Claire G. Coleman is a Melbourne-based writer of fiction, essays and poetry. She is a Noongar woman whose family has belonged to the south coast of Western Australia for millennia. She has published two novels with Hachette Australia: Terra Nullius (2017), for which she won a black&write! writing fellowship, and The Old Lie (2019).

Kim Kruger is a lecturer and researcher with Moondani Balluk, the Indigenous academic unit at Victoria University, Melbourne. She has a background in community development, community radio broadcasting and Indigenous arts management, including film, theatre, visual art and festivals.

The NGV is grateful to the Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund for their support of the exhibition publication.

Special events Australia Contemporary Indigenous DESTINY NGV International