Michael Jalaru Torres
I am an Indigenous photographer and media professional from Broome, Western Australia. As a Djugan and Yawuru man with tribal connections to Jabirr Jabirr and Gooniyandi people, I am inspired by the unique landscapes and people of the Kimberley region, which feature prominently in my work.
My photography draws on my own stories and personal history and explores contemporary social and political issues facing Indigenous people. Much of my work involves conceptual and innovative portraiture and abstract landscape photography. Through my portraits of people taken ‘on country’ I promote positive and individualised representations of Indigenous people. I also incorporate etching, drawing and other design work into my conceptual photography, combining traditional and iconic Kimberley imagery within a modern aesthetic.
I am a self-taught photographer and was drawn to photography as a visual medium because of its accessibility and the challenge of capturing stories in single images. I experiment regularly with different mediums, and I am interested in expanding my photography into installations and motion work and pushing the boundaries of how conceptual photography can be used in virtual reality.
My photography has appeared in exhibitions in Sydney, Perth and regional Western Australia. In 2017 I held two solo exhibitions in Perth, Scar and Scar II, which explored traditional and contemporary ways of marking bodies, minds and country. I had a creative spark about me from a young age, from drawing to photography. I have always had a strong pull in my design to showcase the Kimberley, and the colours and texture of the landscape and people of this region have inspired my work.