Aldona Kmieć Artist

Aldona Kmieć (b. 1977 Poland) is a Polish-Australian photographic artist based in Melbourne. Graduating from the London Metropolitan University with an HND Diploma in Photography in 2008, Aldona settled in Australia in 2009.

Since then, Aldona has been offered a number of residencies, including Mungga Artist studio residency 2024, BOAA Biennale of Australian Art 2018, Under the Floorboards 2013 and We R You Ballarat 2012. Her work was regularly showing at Ballarat International Foto Biennale festival and interstate in Australia. 

She is a winner of Linden Postcard Show Play Award 2024 and BAF Eureka Art Prize Public Choice Award; finalist of Head On Portrait 2023 and 2014, Kennedy Nyland Photography Award 2023; finalist of William and Winifred Bowness Photography Prize 2014; multiple finalist of Maggie Diaz Photography Prize 2015, 2017, 2022; recipient of St John of God Art Commission 2023 and two Rural and Regional Photography Commissions from State Library of Victoria 2020-2022; recipient of various grants and two regional Victoria leadership scholarships between 2014-2018.

She works between Ballarat and Melbourne.

 

Artist Statement

My art practice reflects my cross-cultural experience as a cultural outsider through exploring migrant narratives and human subjects whose sense of displacement – cultural, linguistic, social, geographical – connects to my own. It draws on the foundational event of radical change and dislocation which gave me the experience of living in two worlds simultaneously, an enduring sense of dissonance and instability that has been reinforced by having lived abroad for most of my adult life.

My recent work focuses on long-exposure photographs of myself, dancing. Producing this series involved labour-intensive repetition of the body movement and wearing layers of colourful compositions. This kind of repetitive and physical effort required to create a photograph is a form of contemplation itself and it helps to increase the awareness of my body and mind. All the colours that I choose are connected to my emotions, the red and white Polish flag and historical Polish cultural motifs such as the monument to the Heroes of Warsaw, also known as the Warsaw Nike, in Greek mythology a goddess who personified victory.

Capturing the intended shape and movement in just one photographic frame is complex yet fulfilling, like producing a painting with your own body.

For new commissions and assignments – please contact me to discuss your needs. 

I acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land on which I live and make work: Wadawurrung and Dja Dja Wurrung, Wurundjeri and Gunaikurnai people of Victoria.

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ARTIST CV
COLLECTIONS

State Library of Victoria [Collection of oral histories and photographs for the Rural and Regional Commission 2020-2023], St John of God Art Collection, Ballarat Arts Foundation, Museum of Democracy at Eureka + private collections

EDUCATION  

2008 Higher National Diploma in Photography | London Metropolitan University

ARTIST RESIDENCIES

2024 Mungga Artist Studios | Ivanhoe Library and Cultural Hub *until Feb 18, 2024
2018 BOAA Biennale of Australian Art | Ballarat Mining Exchange
2013 Under the Floorboards | Uniting Ballarat
2013 We R You Street Paste-up Project Facilitator | City of Ballarat

AWARDS

2023 Winner | Linden Postcard Show Prize – Play Award
2023 Finalist | Head On Portrait Award 
2023 Finalist | Kennedy Nyland Photography Prize
2022 Finalist | Maggie Diaz Photography Prize for Women
2018 Finalist | Cambridge Studio Gallery Portrait Prize
2018 Finalist | Art Lovers Australia Prize, Gold Coast
2018 Finalist | Contemporary Art Awards, Brisbane
2017 Finalist | Maggie Diaz Photography Prize for Women
2017 Winner 3rd Prize | Airbnb, Fear of Flying story
2016 Finalist | Eureka Art Prize, Ballarat Arts Foundation
2015 Finalist | The Maggie Diaz Photography Prize
2014 Winner | Eureka Art Prize Ballarat Arts Foundation
2014 Finalist | Bowness Photography Prize MGA Gallery, Melbourne
2014 Finalist | Head On Photo Festival Portrait Category Sydney
2013 Winner | Leica Salon Most Humorous Image | CCP Melbourne

2013 Winner | Eureka Art Prize Ballarat Arts Foundation 
2012 Honourable Mention Fine Art Black & White Spider Awards
2012 Published Finalist ‘My migration. Moja Emigracja’ book 

2011 Terry O’Neill Photography award long-list, London 
2008 Winner End of Year Best Photo Competition, AOP Gallery London 

ART GRANTS / COMMISSIONS

2023 Hospitals as a Place, St John of God Art Collection   
2022 State of Change: documenting COVID-19 pandemic, State Library Victoria
2020 Focus on Country Victoria: Regional & rural stories, State Library Victoria
2017 Paste up Photography Project Grant, East Gippsland Council
2013 Under the Floorboards Photography grant, Uniting Care Ballarat
2013 We R You Paste-up Project Facilitator, City of Ballarat Council
2011 Photography Grant, BAF Ballarat Arts Foundation

SOLO EXHIBITIONS

2024 Winterbloom | Loft 275 Gallery, Ivanhoe Library & Cultural Hub *current
2023 Winterbloom | Ballarat International Foto Biennale, RACV Goldfields Gallery
2017 In the process of Healing | Ballarat International Foto Biennale
2015 Dreamscapes | Ballarat International Foto Biennale 
2013 Australia, a New Chapter | Ballarat International Foto Biennale 
2013 My Australia | Backspace Gallery Ballarat
2011 Transient | Ballarat Intl Foto Biennale | Craig’s Royal Hotel Ballarat

GROUP EXHIBITIONS

2023

2023 Linden Postcard Show | Linden New Art Gallery, Melbourne 
2023 EGAG Wrap Prize | East Gippsland Art Gallery, Bairnsdale
2023 Eureka Art Award | Fairbanks Gallery, Ballarat 
2023 Head On Portrait Award finalists | Bondi Pavilion Sydney 
2023 Hospitals as a Place | St John of God Health Care HQ, Perth 
2023 PAF Contemporary Drawing Biennale | No Vacancy Gallery, Melbourne
2023 Echoes of a Gaze | Brunswick Street Gallery, Melbourne
2023 The Real Thing | Core ProgramBallarat International Foto Biennale (commissioned)

2022

2022 CCP Summer Salon | Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne
2022 Head On Photography Festival ‘Add On’ | Bondi Pavilion Sydney
2022 Borders | Polish Art Foundation, Victorian Artists Society (VAS) Melbourne
2022 Maggie Diaz Photography Prize for Women Finalists | Brightspace Gallery, St Kilda
2022 State of Change: Regional & rural stories of 2020 touring exhibition (Colac, Bright, Geelong)
2022 Banyule Art Salon | Ivanhoe Library and Cultural Hub, Melbourne

2021

2021 Faces of the Polish Community | Polish Art Foundation, VAS Melbourne
2021 Regional bushfires and COVID recovery | State Library Victoria, Melbourne
2021 STAGES: life in lockdown | Monash Gallery of Art, Melbourne
2021 CCP Salon | Centre of Contemporary Photography, Melbourne
2020 Vibes | Victorian Artists Society, Melbourne 
2020 Members Group Exhibition | Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne
2019 Colours of World Cultures | Backspace Gallery, Ballarat
2019 Beyond 50% | Backspace Gallery, Ballarat
2018 Pol-Art Festival QCA Galleries South Bank, Brisbane
2018 BAF Eureka Art Award Finalists | Post Office Gallery, Ballarat
2018 Mixed Blessings | Mercure Hotel & Convention Centre, Ballarat
2018 Open studio ArtWalk | Soldiers Hill Artist Collective, Ballarat  
2018 Portrait Prize | Cambridge Studio Gallery, Collingwood 

2017

2017 Our Place – Soldiers Hill Artist Collective | Backspace Gallery Ballarat
2017 Maggie Diaz Photography Prize for Women | Brightspace Gallery, St Kilda

2017 BAF Eureka Art Award Finalists | Ballarat Art Gallery

2016

2016 BAF Eureka Art Award Finalists | Post Office Gallery, Ballarat
2016 Impressions Polish Arts Foundation | Victorian Artists Society Gallery, Melbourne
2016 Linden Postcard Show | Linden New Art Gallery, Melbourne
2016 Self Portraits to Selfies | The Lost Ones Gallery, Ballarat

2015

2015 Pol-Art Festival | Steps Gallery, Melbourne
2015 Maggie Diaz Photography Prize for Women | Brightspace Gallery, St Kilda

2014

2014 Eureka Art Prize Finalists | Post Office Gallery, Ballarat
2014 Bowness Photography Prize Finalists | Monash Gallery of Art, Melbourne
2014 Head On Finalists | Paddington Reservoir Gallery, Sydney

2013 Under the Floorboards | Art Gallery Ballarat
2012 Pol-Art Festival | Perth
2011 Lost in Translation collaboration with painter Casey Tosh, Portico, Ballarat
2011 AOP Open Awards Finalists | Truman Brewery, London

VOLUNTEERING & COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT

2018 Gippsland Community Leadership Program (scholarship)
2015-16
2014 Ballarat Community Leadership Program (scholarship)
2012-2014 Culture Diversity Advisor / Intercultural Ambassador, City of Ballarat
2009-2015 Festival Production Team | Ballarat International Foto Biennale
2012-2015 Board Member | Ballarat Arts Alive
2013- current Member Soldiers Hill Artist Collective 

*upcoming