Luminous World

Luminous World brings together more than 50 paintings, objects and photographs from the Wesfarmers collection in a contemporary conversation about light – now on show at the National Library of Australia in Canberra. 

The exhibition showcases many of the most significant works of art acquired by Wesfarmers in the past 30 years. This is the first time the works have been displayed as an exhibition in a national cultural institution.

Exhibition curator Helen Carroll saidthe story behind Luminous World was that of light.

‘Luminous World embraces exploration of the properties of light from the perspective of the optical experience, the connection between the movement of the stars and the cycles of life on earth; and the diversity of cultural, mythical and spiritual ideas with which light has come to be associated,’ she said.

 Ms Carroll said the exhibition, from concept to fruition - including the commissioning of John Kinsella’s body of poetry  - was two years in the making.

 Director-General of the National Library of Australia, Ms Anne-Marie Schwirtlich, said cultural institutions were increasingly working with the corporate world to ensure that the best in Australian art, photography, literature and sound was made available to the widest audiences.

 ‘This is the second time we have worked with Wesfarmers to showcase their contemporary Australian collection at the National Library,’ Ms Schwirtlich said.  ‘In 2004, we worked together on Sublime. That exhibition featured the first 25 years of Wesfarmers’ art collection and was a great success.’

 Artists featured in Luminous World include Rosalie Gascoigne, Bill Henson, Nyapanyapa Yunupingu, Gretchen Albrecht, Dale Frank, and Rosemary Laing.

 Luminous World: Contemporary Art from the Wesfarmers Collection is on at the National Library of Australia, Canberra, until 29 June 2014. Open daily. Free exhibition.

High-res images available at

Contact details

Sally Hopman
Media Liaison Manager
02 6262 1704
0401 226 697