Dean Cross was born (1986) and raised on Ngunnawal/Ngambri Country and a Worimi man through his paternal bloodline. He is a paratactical artist interested in collisions of materials, ideas and histories. He is motivated by the understanding that his practice sits within a continuum of the oldest living culture on Earth – and enacts First Nations sovereignty through expanded contemporary art methodologies. He hopes to traverse the poetic and the political in a nuanced choreography of form and ideas.
He has shown his work extensively across Australia at galleries and museums including Art Gallery of South Australia, UNSW Galleries, Australian Centre of Photography, Artspace Sydney, Perth Institute of Contemporary Art, and Alaska Projects. His work is collected by both public and private collections including: Art Gallery of South Australia; National Gallery of Victoria (Australia); and The Queensland University of Technology Art Museum (Australia).
Cross is the inaugural recipient of the Good Initiative Award, Goulburn Regional Art Gallery (2020), resulting in a two-part institutional solo exhibition at Goulburn Regional Art Gallery and Carriageworks. Titled Icarus, My Son, the first iteration was on view at the former location from 17 July to 28 August 2021, and the second at the latter from 17 November 2021 to 30 Jan 2022.
He was also awarded the School of Art and Design Drawing Prize, Australian National University (2017); the M16 Artspace Drawing Prize (2016); and Highly Commended,Macquarie Emerging Arts Prize (2015). Cross is a current resident of The Clothing Store Artist Studios, Carriageworks (Australia). He has completed residencies with the 4A Beijing Studio Program, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art (Australia); and Canberra Contemporary Art Space (Australia).
Cross is currently part of several institutional exhibitions, such as: the 2022 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art, curated by Sebastian Goldspink, Art Gallery of South Australia; Primavera 2021: Young Australian Artists, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, Australia; Sometimes I miss the Applause (solo exhibition), Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne, Australia; and From Impulse to Action, Bundanon Art Museum, Australia.