Natalya Hughes, ‘The Interior’, work in progress, 2021. Courtesy of the artist, Sullivan+Strumpf, and Milani Gallery.

The Interior

Can we use the talking cure to solve society’s ‘problem’ with women? Natalya Hughes’s The Interior invites audiences into an exaggerated consultation room playfully furnished for psychoanalysis.

About the exhibition

The Interior is an immersive installation combining sculptural seating, richly patterned soft furnishings, and uncanny object d’art, nestled around a hand painted mural to generate a stimulating space to unpack our collective and unconscious biases.

Interested in the role of women and their historical absence from positions of power, the part-professional part-domestic setting conjured by The Interior plays with gendered power dynamics between public and private space. The couches that dot the gallery take their lush contours from the shapes of the female body, and their detailed upholstery sees motifs of eyes, rats, and snakes from Freud’s patient case studies ripple over the space in fleshy tones.

Audiences are invited to recline and be enveloped, soothed, and held by the furniture’s womanly forms while taking turns playing analyst and patient. Throughout this bodily encounter The Interior hopes to create a space where the existence of women can be reimagined on different terms in the post ‘Me Too’ world.

Curated by Tulleah Pearce.


Natalya Hughes 


Audio Descriptions

‘The Interior’ Natalya Hughes – Introduction
‘The Interior’ Natalya Hughes – ‘Curtain
‘The Interior’ Natalya Hughes – ‘Chair 1’, ‘The Burning House’ and ‘Baubo’
‘The Interior’ Natalya Hughes – ‘Chair 2’, ‘Involuntary Movement of the Eye’, ‘Sphinx Phantasy’ and ‘Black Snake!’
‘The Interior’ Natalya Hughes – ‘Chair 3’, ‘Wolves, Watching’ and ‘Rat Man’
‘The Interior’ Natalya Hughes – ‘Mural’
‘The Interior’ Natalya Hughes – On Shelf

Tour Dates

17 March 202329 April 2023
25 May 20238 July 2023
25 November 202318 February 2024
2 March 202413 April 2024
14 June 202428 July 2024
August 2024October 2024
4 November 202426 January 2025
7 February 20256 April 2025
11 April 202522 June 2025
August 2025September 2025
27 November 2025 31 January 2026


The Interior is a travelling exhibition organised by Institute of Modern Art (IMA), toured by Museums & Galleries Queensland.

The Interior has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body; the Australia Council’s Contemporary Touring initiative; the Fini Artist Fellowship through the Sheila Foundation; Queensland College of Art, Griffith University; Creative Art Research Institute, Griffith University; and Porter’s Paints, New Farm. 

Museums & Galleries Queensland is also supported by the Tim Fairfax Family Foundation and receives funds from Creative Australia through the Australian Cultural Fund.

Natalya Hughes is represented by Milani Gallery, Brisbane, and Sullivan + Strumpf, Sydney.


Exhibition Development & Touring

Museums & Galleries Queensland

An artwork by Elisa Jane Carmichael and Sonja Carmichael consisting of ghost net, fibres and fish scales
Elisa Jane Carmichael and Sonja Carmichael, ‘Circle of Life and Light’ (detail), 2019. Ghost net, wire, nylon fishing net, synthetic fibres and fish scales. Dimensions variable. Photo: Carl Warner.

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