Up in the Sky: Tracey Moffatt in New York

A film by Jane Cole

Australia | 1999 | 26 minutes | Color | DVD | Order No. 00645


"UP IN THE SKY scans the universe created by the provocative and talented photographer and filmmaker Tracey Moffatt, Australia's answer to Cindy Sherman and with even more of an edge, if that's possible. An important figure in the Australian postcolonial avant-garde, Moffatt started out with visually compelling (and often disturbing) photographs and films such as NICE COLOURED GIRLS, NIGHT CRIES, and BEDEVIL that explore her own Aboriginal heritage and the complex ways that power, race and gender intersect, often violently, in everyday life. More recently, her work draws on sources as diverse as Pasolini and Mad Max films, or Victorian photography. Jane Cole's documentary is an insightful portrait of Moffatt and her work, and an invaluable framework for anyone interested in the work of this cutting edge artist."
Faye Ginsburg, Director, The Center for Media, Culture, and History, New York University


"Jane Cole's documentary is an ideal teaching resource...because it provides new insights into the work of this challenging artist. 'Up in the Sky' includes revealing and informative interviews with curators, critics, art dealers and Moffatt herself. These interviews are dispersed with behind-the-scenes footage of Moffatt hard at work--both in the studio and schmoozing at gallery openings--and reveal some of Moffatt's political engagements, influences and ambitions."

Daniel Mudie Cunningham University of Western Sydney Nepean

“...one of the strongest artist portraits captured on film...Cole’s film is delightfully edited and shot, with informative interviews with major American curators and critics...My students loved the film and found it useful for their work. I recommend this superb film as an essential reference in the study of the work of Tracey Moffatt.”

Dr. Laleen Jayamanne University of Sydney


  • 21st Festival International de Films de Femmes
  • Australian Broadcasting Corporation TV (ABCTV)


Jane Cole

Born in February 1968, in Sydney, Australia, Jane Cole studied Greek, Roman and English Literature before completing a Masters Degree in Screen Studies and Screen Writing at the University of Sydney and the University of Technology, Sydney, 1999. She worked extensively in the Australian film industry concurrently with her university work and had begun directing when she was 19 years old. She worked as a music video director and as an assistant editor of feature films with Australian directors: Jane Campion, Sweetie, 1989, An Angel At My Table, 1990; Monica Pellizzari's Just Desserts, 1992, and Fistful of Flies, 1996; and later as an editor and cinematographer for Tracey Moffatt's Heaven, 1997.
Jane's debut documentary as producer/director, Up in the Sky: Tracey Moffatt in New York, screened at the 21st Festival International de Films de Femmes, Paris, 1999, on ABCTV, 1999 and continues to find an audience in broadcast TV & cable, universities and airlines around the world. Jane currently lives and works in Sydney. (02/00)


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