‘Through the Eyes of the Son’ a retrospective display of never-before-seen photographs by John Williams, opens at the Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne on 25 October.
Untitled, 1991; V.C. Corner Australian Cemetery and Memorial. © John Williams.
Best known for his documentary street photography, John Williams (1933–2016), made an indelible mark on Australian photography both as a photographer and an educator. This exhibition shows some of his photographs documenting the impact of the First World War. It stemmed from his own past. Inspired by his veteran father’s war service, John’s war related imagery provides perceptive reflections on collective memory and memorialisation.
Many of the works featured in the exhibition have not previously been displayed and have been donated to the Shrine by John’s widow, Jean Curthoys. Notable in her own right as the driving force behind the creation and delivery of the first feminist philosophy subjects delivered in Australia at Sydney University, Jean’s ’15 minutes of fame’ as she likes to call it, was during the visit of US President Johnson to Sydney in 1966 as the ‘unnamed’ female lying before his car in protest. As well as the new work, this exhibition will also showcase some of John’s most iconic images, including his Anzac Day and War Portraits series.