We might be glad 2023 is in the rear-view mirror – but you do not want to miss the thought-provoking and unique exhibition Behind the Lines 2023: All Fun and Games at the Cowra Regional Art Gallery from 11 February and 17 March 2024.
Have a laugh or reflect on the year gone by in the latest retrospective of hot political issues and current affairs of 2023 as seen through the eyes of Australia’s most insightful political cartoonists. No politician, party or policy is safe from the nation’s best cartoonists; witty, powerful or controversial, their images offer an astutely observed journey through twelve months in our political life. Comprising 100 cartoons this vibrant and exciting touring exhibition was developed by the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House (MoAD) in Canberra.
This year’s Behind the Lines is swinging at the pinata, passing the parcel, and waiting for the music to stop because the theme is All Fun and Games. Cartoonists are popping on their party hats and breaking out the bunting while they take us on a journey through the year that was 2023.
Whether you live in the city, regional or remote Australia, times were interesting last year – from soaring inflation and climate change to the Voice referendum and international conflicts. Helping us navigate these complex issues and see beyond the political game-playing were Australia’s established and emerging political cartoonists.
“Political cartoons are an important part of our democracy – they make it fun and accessible for everyone to discuss and debate the news and ideas of the day. They help encourage discussion and understanding in diverse communities across the country,” MoAD Director Stephanie Bull said.
“We strive to enable and inspire audiences to explore how social and political conversations are shaping an evolving Australia and equip them to participate as engaged citizens wherever they live in our nation.”
A highlight of this year’s exhibition are works by Fiona Katauskas, a cartoonist for The Guardian, who was named 2023 Political Cartoonist of the Year. Judges acknowledged Katauskas’ work for its heart, humour, and diversity.
Opening and Guest Speaker Event
A special preview and opening of the exhibition Behind the Lines: All Fun and Games will take place at the Cowra Regional Art Gallery on Saturday 10 February 2024 commencing at 2pm. The exhibition will be opened by Dr Alex Walton, Curator Museum of Australian Democracy with special guest speaker Cathy Wilcox, Cartoonist and Children’s Book Illustrator. Admission is free. All welcome.
The Behind the Lines touring program is generously supported by the National Collecting Institutions Touring and Outreach Program, an Australian Government program aiming to improve access to the national collections for all Australians.