Emerging artists give new life to the themes that inspired history’s great works

Throughout history, artists have received commissions that have led to some of the world’s most influential works. In 2019, the University of Melbourne gave 30 emerging artists their first commission. This commission was inspired by themes found in works by the likes of Michelangelo, Frida Kahlo and Bob Dylan. At the time of receiving the commission, the artists had no knowledge of its origin.

Five of these young artists received arguably the most iconic commission, the inspiration for Michelangelo’s David, a vision of human perfection carved from a mammoth and flawed slab of marbled stone. Through each of their five disciplines, from interactive composition and visual art to classical music and contemporary dance, their responses explore the nature of human perfection in contemporary society.

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David

David

Create a work that represents the idea of human physical perfection

Self-Portrait with Monkeys

Self-Portrait with Monkeys

Create a work that divulges a deeply personal, yet unattainable desire