Locals go nude on Brisbane River for artist Spencer Tunick

Spencer Tunick photographed hundreds of people nude on the Brisbane River
Altered video screenshot. Image: Spencer Tunick/Instagram

Artist Spencer Tunick has shared an early preview of the artwork he created with over 100 nude volunteers on the Brisbane River at the weekend.

The New York artist is renowned for his live artworks depicting the nude figure in public. Since 1992, Spencer has organised over 100 installations using dozens, hundreds or thousands of volunteers.

In each one, the crowds of participants use their bare bodies en masse to create artistic landscapes.

A few months back, Spencer called out for volunteers to go nude on the Brisbane River for an art installation. He’s working in Brisbane for the first time as part of Brisbane Powerhouse’s MELT queer arts festival this month.

Early on Saturday morning (November 18), around 150 people bared all and lined the riverbank to create Spencer Tunick’s new artwork TIDE.

The final photography will be unveiled at a later date. But Spencer shared footage he filmed during the creation of the riverbank art.

“Continuing my relationship with the concrete world versus the natural world, I’ve chosen works close to the river that juxtapose flesh architecture to the environment,” Spencer told us last week.

Spencer Tunick shoot Tide artwork on Brisbane River

Spencer Tunick planning nude artwork on Story Bridge

Next year, Spencer Tunick will be back in Brisbane for an even bigger project.

In October 2024, he will close Brisbane’s Story Bridge and invite thousands of live nude people to gather for an artwork.

The American artist Spencer Tunick is dressed in a black shirt. He is photographed in front of the backdrop of the Brisbane city skyline and the Story Bridge.
Artist Spencer Tunick. Image: Jay Cull

Spencer has created a handful of artworks in Australia before. These two artworks are his first in Brisbane.

“The big project will see if Brisbane is as open minded as Melbourne and Sydney. We hope that we can gather enough people to to attempt to fill up the Story Bridge,” he said.

“It’s a way that the community can be free. They’re doing something that might normally not be allowed and there’s a window of freedom that exists within the time.

“It’s an opportunity for people to shed their inhibitions to come together as a community to make an artwork that is a little bit surreal.

“I think everyone’s looking for a reason to go beyond their limits. Hopefully, they use me as a catalyst and my art as a catalyst for for that.”

Expressions of interest for the 2024 artwork are open now at Brisbane Powerhouse’s website.

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Jordan Hirst
Jordan Hirst

Jordan Hirst is an experienced journalist and content creator with a career spanning over a decade at QNews. Since 2012, the Brisbane local has covered an enormous range of topics and subjects in-depth affecting the LGBTIQA+ community, both in Australia and overseas. Today, the Brisbane-based journalist covers everything from current affairs, politics and health to sport and entertainment.

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