'John West is Dead' is a new series of paintings by dynamic Melbourne artist Tim Vagg
In this exciting new show, the artist continues a similar vein of inquiry from his last exhibition, 'Heroes, Drunks & Bounders' in re-animating colourful figures from Melbourne's diverse history through his revealing gallery of portraits.
Of these famous and infamous characters, Tim has chosen to focus on the mythical and
controversial Collingwood tycoon, John Wren.
'John West is Dead' re-examines the controversy surrounding one of Australia's most famous literary libel cases that arose from the publication of Frank Hardy's 'Power without Glory.'
This new work investigates the tensions between Hardy's thinly-veiled fiction of his character John West and the John Wren of prevailing historical accounts. The exhibition is not so much a biographical portrait, but more a study of the process of history through the prism of historical, political and cultural myth.
Through a combination of broad research and artistic invention, Tim Vagg
offers us a chance to ponder our own history through our fascination with criminal notoriety and notions of class politics within the specter of our convict past.