George, John, Paul, Ringo 2005

HOOKEY, Gordon (Waanyi)

Registration number



HOOKEY, Gordon (Waanyi)


George, John, Paul, Ringo

Production date



oil on canvas

Dimensions (H x W x D)

140 x 105 cm (frame size)

Credit line

Purchased, 2008
City of Melbourne Art and Heritage Collection Image courtesy of the artist and Milani Gallery, Brisbane


Gordon Hookey, George, John, Paul, Ringo, 2005


Brisbane-based painter and sculptor Gordon Hookey is a Waanyi man, the traditional lands of which are in north-western Queensland. Hookey is a resolutely political artist, brandishing a sardonic wit to comment on national and international events, and historically embedded injustices – particularly voicing the impact of these on Indigenous Australians. His is a raw, colourful and often confronting practice that forces the viewer out of any Western complacency that we live in a reconciled post-colonial, post-imperial world, where the past and present are discontinuous. Charged by a frustration grounded in historical discrimination and structural inequality, his distilled narratives of cultural tension are expressed through bold iconography and clever wordplay. The work is particularly of its time, referencing Osama bin Laden, who was at that point still alive.

Painted in 2005, Hookey’s ‘George, John, Paul, Ringo’ was acquired for the Art and Heritage Collection in 2008, following his first solo show in Melbourne, held at the Nellie Castan Gallery.