Arts / Culture

Archibald Prize-winner Julia Gutman just opened her first solo show in Melbourne

Julia Gutman 'Everyone You Are Looking at is Also You' at Sullivan+Strumpf’s Collingwood gallery.

If you haven't had the chance to experience Julia Gutman's patchwork tapestries in the flesh, it's an experience difficult to relay in words. Perhaps its the depth of storytelling latent in the textiles she forages for her practice, or the way she seemingly stitches each piece together with rugged abandon, but you'll find yourself gut-wrenchingly moved, drawn into each story, and itching for more.

The 2023 Archibald Prize-winning artist is opening her first solo show in Melbourne this week – the long-awaited follow-up to her sold-out debut in Sydney in July 2022 – and if you're in town, we think you'd be remiss to not spend time with her pieces in person.

Everyone You Are Looking at is Also You is Gutman's first major body of work since making history as one of the youngest-ever recipients of the Archibald Prize last year (and one of few women to have ever received the prize in its century-long history). While her practice has always been deeply intimate and personal, this show is the first time Gutman has turned the spotlight inward; fragmented portraits and self-reflections presenting an artist at war with herself, watching her own uneasy gaze, figures from her life tangled together. Feet are bare. Faces long for something just out of reach.

True to her existing body of work, Gutman has crafted the pieces in this show from donated and found textiles – clothing, bedsheet and blankets – letting the stories of each garment imbue her work with layered meaning, letting the lines between herself and her community unravel.

Everyone You Are Looking at is Also You opened on Thursday night, and will be on display through till Saturday 27 April 2024 at Sullivan & Strumpf's Collingwood gallery.

Stay inspired, follow us.