Teena McCarthy is a visual artist and poet who works predominantly in painting, photography and performance art. She graduated in 2014 from UNSW Art & Design with a Bachelor of Fine Arts with Distinction.
McCarthy is an Italian/Barkindji woman who is a descendant of The Stolen Generations. Her work documents her family’s displacement and Aboriginal Australian’s loss of Culture and their ‘hidden’ history. While acknowledging the intergenerational pain of post colonialism, McCarthy uses wit, humour and pathos to explore her own identity. Synchronicity also comes into play in McCarthy’s experimental painting, often determining its outcome and informing its own materiality.
McCarthy has exhibited extensively over the past seven years, most recently in Four Women: (I do belong) Double, curated by Djon Mundine OAM, Lismore Regional Gallery, 2017, and in Realising Mother, curated by Zurica Pulija, with co-curators Sandy Edwards and Luke Letourneau, Kudos Galleries, UNSW Art & Design, 2017. Her work from this show was featured in an article and interview in The Sydney Morning Herald and written about by Jasmine Salomon in her article ‘Envisioning the Subjective Maternal Body’ in Real Time magazine (http://www.realtime.org.au/envisioning-the-subjective-maternal-body/). McCarthy’s work has also been written about by Helen Grace, Associate Dept. of Gender & Cultural Studies, University of Sydney, in her ‘Motherhood Statements’ in the Realising Mother catalogue, and by Djon Mundine OAM and Virginia Fraser in their essays in the Four Women exhibition catalogue. ‘And there’ll be NO dancing’: Perspectives on Policies Impacting Indigenous Australia since 2007 (Baehr, E. & Schmidt-Haberkamp, B. Eds. 2017, Cambridge Scholars Publishing).
Selective exhibitions include: A Widening Gap: The Intervention, 10 Years On, curated by Djon Mundine OAM, at The Cross Arts Project, Potts Point, 2017; When are the Bush Marys Coming, as Featured Artist at Cementa ’17, curated by Ann Finnegan, plus a 12 day artists residency in Kandos, NSW; ARTLANDS Old Lands, New Marks exhibition, curated by Djon Mundine OAM, as Featured Artist, Dubbo Regional Gallery, 2016; That I May be of Service – Motto of the Clan Foley, curated by Djon Mundine OAM at The Rocks Discovery Museum, 2015 & 2014.
McCarthy was a finalist in The 70th Year Mosman Art Prize at Mosman Art Gallery, 2017, selected by Kirsten Paisley, Deputy Director of National Gallery of Australia; The NSW Parliament Aboriginal Art Prize 2015 & 2014, and in 2013 was commissioned to paint the cover of the UNSW Law Faculty’s Reconciliation Action Plan, a painting which was later acquired for the UNSW Permanent Art Collection.