In the the first of a newly established collaboration between Craig’s Royal Hotel and the Ballarat International Foto Biennale we are thrilled to announce an exhibition featuring Erwin Olaf and Hendrik Kerstens, two of the most significant practising Dutch photographers. Exclusive to Regional Victoria this stunning exhibition of highly stylised works is a must see.

Erwin Olaf’s trademark is to address social issues within the framework of a highly stylised mode of imagery.

Olaf’s visually sophisticated and conceptually provocative style has been embraced by both the editorial and advertising world. In 2010 Louis Vuitton commissioned Olaf for a portrait series in collaboration with the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam. In 2012 Olaf shot the campaign for luxury fashion brand Bottega Veneta.

In 2013 Erwin Olaf’s design for the new national side of the Dutch euro coins was selected from 12 designs by competing artists.

Hendrik Kerstens’s photographs were created from the desire to capture the relationship between every day scenes and events, projected against the images of Dutch painters of the seventeenth century.  He extensively uses his daughter Paula in his images and the portraits are clearly reminiscent of Johannes Vermeer. The austerity of the photographs, its clarity and the characteristic “Dutch” light all combine to create this impression. Kerstens creates a conceptual and humorous dialog between past and present.


Hendrik Kerstens
Ultrachrome print
625 x 500mm

Hendrik Kerstens
Ultrachrome print
625 x 500mm
















Talk and Tea

To celebrate this first exhibition of Erwin Olaf and Hendrick Kerstens the Ballarat International Foto Biennale will be hosting a Talk and Tea at Craig’s Royal Hotel on Sunday 17 February.

In the grandeur of the beautifully restored Craig’s Grand Dining Room, sip tea, coffee or a glass of sparkling wine accompanied by classic finger sandwiches, savouries, scones and the most luscious petit fours, all made in house.

Guest speaker, Laurie Benson, Curator of International Art at the National Gallery of Victoria, will lead the talk and discuss Erwin Olaf and Hendrick Kerstens work and their relationship to the Dutch masters.


Laurie Benson is Curator of International Art at the National Gallery of Victoria. He has been at the NGV since 1999 and has worked on a number of major exhibitions including, Caravaggio Darkness and Light, The Impressionists, Salvador Dali Liquid Desire, and Cinema India, the Art of Bollywood, Italian Masterpieces from Spain’s Royal Court, Museo del Prado, and Van Gogh and the seasons. Laurie has also co-authored three of the handbooks of the NGV International Art collection. As well as being the curator of Medieval Moderns: The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood he was the co-curator of the exhibition Horse.

Please select an entry time

  • Open Hours
    November 10, 2018 - February 28, 2019
    9:00 am - 5:00 pm
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