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Sat 26 October 2024 @ 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 10:00 am on Saturday, repeating until Sun November 24, 2024

An event every week that begins at 10:00 am on Sunday, repeating until Sun November 24, 2024

An event every week that begins at 9:00 am on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, repeating until Sun November 24, 2024

Cairns Art Gallery

Maria Fernanda Cardoso – Spiders of Paradise Exhibition at Cairns Art Gallery

Exhibition developed and toured by the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia.


Maria Fernanda Cardoso is internationally renowned for using unconventional and organic materials to consider nature and its links to culture and science. Working across sculpture, photography, installation, video and performance, her work examines the connections and tensions between society and the natural world.


Maria Fernanda was born in Bogota, Columbia in 1963 and has lived and worked in Sydney since 1997. She has exhibited widely in Australia and internationally and represented Colombia at the Venice Biennale in 2003.


Spiders of Paradise presents new works from Cardoso’s Spiders of Paradise photographic series (2018–ongoing), alongside her acclaimed video work On the Origins of Art I-II (2016). Cardoso’s subject is the tiny Australian Maratus spider – measuring less than 5mm in size – and its unique, brightly-coloured abdomen, which plays an important role in its elaborate mating rituals.


“The Maratus spiders of Australia are the most colourful, flamboyant, sexy, and charming spiders on the planet… To me, their use of colour, gesture, sound and movement makes them (…) sophisticated visual and performing artists… They are also the smallest performers I know of…”, Maria Fernanda Cardoso.


Working across a suite of large-scale photographs, the exquisite multi-coloured patterns of various species of Maratus are presented as individual portraits. Produced in collaboration with scientific imager Geoff Thompson and entomologist Andy Wang from the Queensland Museum, each image is comprised of over 1000 individual photos, which together reveal stunning nuances of colour and form in incredible detail.


Cardoso’s video On the Origins of Art I-II presents the complex courtship ritual of the Maratus at an immersive scale. It showcases the spider’s sophisticated communication through dance and vibration, culminating in the display of its colourful patterned abdominal flap. Bringing together science, art and nature, this exhibition celebrates the beauty of the natural world and reveals the sophisticated lives of creatures not usually witnessed.


Exhibition Runs: 31st August – 24th November 2024


Entry: Free Entry


For more information please visit the Cairns Art Gallery website.


Please check directly with the Cairns Art Gallery for opening hours on Public Holidays.


Image: Maria Fernanda CARDOSO, Spiders of Paradise: Maratus splendens 2023, pigment print on paper, framed, courtesy the artist and Sullivan+Strumpf, Sydney © the artist.



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Sat 26 October 2024
10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Event Category:


Cairns Art Gallery
+61 7 4046 4800
View Organiser Website


Cairns Art Gallery
40 Abbott St
Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
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+61 7 4046 4800
View Venue Website