contemporary visual artist


practicing on Nyoongar Country in Walyalup / Fremantle, Western Australia


Office walls with view of a river


Office walls with view of a river is a photographic series documenting the Wesfarmers Art Collection in Perth, Australia. Drawing upon the history of art collections and collectors, it considers the transitory nature of these artworks and attempts to capture their semi-permanent existence in a functional office space.

In past centuries aristocrats, royalty and religious institutions  played an important role in commissioning and collecting the significant artworks of their time. Today, museums, universities, institutions and corporations play a key role in collecting the significant artwork of our time. These works are not presented in ornate palaces, churches or castles, but are instead presented in white-boxes, building lobbies and on office walls.

Over an 18 month period, I photographed the Wesfarmers Art Collection in situ at their headquarters in Perth CBD. During business hours this space is alive with people working, meeting, eating, and moving about. After hours, the artworks lay undisturbed in their slick office environment. I captured the artworks in this transitional period, attempting to distill some of the fleeting and serendipitous moments where artwork and context created something new.

Iconic art works take on a revised meaning in this unique environment, the political and social challenges of our time shaping this new interpretation: the suburban home as asset, school protests for climate action, the history of colonisation, labour, ancient cultures/modern life, and power struggles.


Special thanks to Helen Carroll and the Wesfarmers Art Collection for commissioning this body of work.


Exhibition History

2019, Office walls with a view of a river, Wesfarmers Art Collection, Perth

© Dan McCabe, 2024