Marie Hagerty – Biography

Marie Hagerty’s works are constantly shifting between figuration and abstraction to create alluring and refined hybrid images that seem to be arrested in movement, space, and time.1 Her influences are varied and idiosyncratic mingling references to historical and contemporary art and The Kama Sutra’s nebulous forms.2


Described as sensuous, beguiling, suggestive, sculptural, Hagerty’s works rely on bold curving forms, depth of colour, balance of texture, and precise linear edges to suggest a feminist narrative. Technically precise, Hagerty does not begin her compositions with an end point in mind, but allows for mingled forms and amorphous figures to evolve before her as she works.3


“Sometimes I feel like they are like Kafka’s Metamorphosis…Abstraction can make the viewer uncomfortable,” states the artist. Hagerty’s works hold a visual tension that results from the juxtaposition of the figurative and the abstract, making attempts to pick out anthropomorphic forms just out of reach. Like Kafka’s amorphous Gregor, Hagerty’s paintings hover on a precipice that makes the viewer unsure of what they are seeing.4


Marie Hagerty was born in Sydney in 1964 and currently lives and works in Canberra, Australia. She has attended Meadowbank College of TAFE in Sydney (1984) and Graduated Canberra Institute of the Arts, Canberra (1987).


Hagerty has participated in many solo and group exhibitions including: Pulse: Reflections on the Body, Canberra Museum & Gallery, Canberra (2014); Contemporary Australia: Women, Gallery of Modern Art, Queensland (2012); and Marie Hagerty: Survey Exhibition, Canberra Museum & Art Gallery, Canberra (2007). Hagerty’s work is held in several important collections including the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, and Queensland Art Gallery, Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane.




  1. Grishin, Sasha. “Things Collectors Need to Know 2015.” Art Collector, 71, January-March 2015, pp. 134.
  2. Buttrose, Ellie. “Painting both at once.” Contemporary Australia: Women, Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art, 2012, pp. 77.
  3. Gibson, Prue. “Marie Hagerty’s Mutating Canvases.” Australian Art Review, November-December 2011, pp. 29-30.
  4. Fairley, Gina. “Taking Shape.” Box Magazine, 39, 2013, pp. 51-52.


Full CV