Explore Sydney Contemporary online and at The Commercial | Mitch Cairns, Nigel Milsom, Jude Rae, 2021


While the physical art fair for Sydney Contemporary 2021 is not going ahead at Carriageworks this year, The Commercial is delighted to present the intended artworks at the gallery for the duration of the online event, Explore Sydney Contemporary 11/11/21 - 21/11/21. An exhibition of new works by Mitch Cairns, Nigel Milsom and Jude Rae.


Mitch Cairns

Mitch Cairns (b. 1984) is a maker of pictures. His figurative paintings speak a vernacular of agile invention, image-ideas quickly observed from life. Cairns exhibited in The National: New Australian Art at Carriageworks, Sydney in 2021. He curated the 2019 Primavera: Young Australian Artist exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia. He was a focus artist in the 2016 exhibition Painting. More Painting at ACCA, Melbourne. In 2015, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne presented Mitch Cairns - The Reader’s Voice. Cairns was awarded the 2017 Archibald portrait prize. He has been invited to participate in the Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: Free/State at the Art Gallery of SA in 2022.


Nigel Milsom

Nigel Milsom (b. 1975) is a figurative painter of baroque abstractions. Formal contestations within each painting and within each exhibition (light versus dark, motion versus stasis) slip into more complex and more personal structures. Between 2012 and 2015, Milsom won three of Australia’s most prestigious painting prizes: The 2012 Sir John Sulman Prize, The 2013 Doug Moran National Portrait Prize and The 2015 Archibald Prize. He exhibited in Australian art and the Russian avant-garde, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney in 2017; Painting. More Painting, at ACCA, Melbourne in 2016; Wilderness: Balnaves contemporary painting, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney in 2010.


Jude Rae

Jude Rae’s (b. 1956) observational painting practice is analytic of objects, space and light. She is attracted to still life painting for the conceptual and perceptual propositions it offers. In 2017, a large-scale survey exhibition of Rae’s work, Jude Rae: A Space of Measured Light, was presented by the Drill Hall Gallery at the Australian National University, Canberra.  Rae has been the recipient of major painting prizes including the 2016 Bulgari Art Award at the Art Gallery of New South Wales and the Portia Geach Memorial Award 2008 and 2005. Rae was a finalist in the 2021 Archibald and Sulman Prizes, her entry for the Sulman being acquired for the Art Gallery of New South Wales collection. Rae’s work is included in the 2021 landmark exhibition, Know My Name at the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra.