Award-winning artist Bindi Cole was born in 1975 in Melbourne, Australia. She studied at Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE and the University of Ballarat. Bindi is a resilient and ingenious Melbourne-born photographer, curator and new media artist with Wadawurrung heritage who speaks compellingly about taboo topics through her photographs, videos and installations.
Cole’s early interest in photography was curtailed by the trauma of her mother’s heroin addiction and death from cancer, causing her descent into depression and drugs. During a transformative prison term, Cole found Christianity and recaptured her self-belief. Her deeply personal and powerful artistic practice focuses on identity and the exploration of tensions within.
Cole works to expose the questions most are afraid to ask. Her artworks are at times so personal, cathartically imbuing them with a gritty honesty that the viewer’s experience can verge on voyeurism. Cole’s work exposes the latent and unspoken power dynamics of global culture in the here and now. She subtly but powerfully reveals some uncomfortable truths about the fundamental disconnection between who we are – the communities and identities by which we shape our sense of self – and how the prevailing culture attempts to place and define us.
In 2010, Cole was listed as one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in Melbourne. Since her first solo show in 2007, Cole’s work has been widely exhibition in solo and group exhibitions including the National Gallery of Victoria, Art Gallery of NSW, Museum of Contemporary Art, Queensland Gallery of Modern Art, National Portrait Gallery, Perth Institute of Contemporary Art, Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Art (Brooklyn, USA), Museum of Contemporary Art (Taiwan). Her work is held in various collections across the world. Cole lives and works in Melbourne, Australia.