This exhibition is a plea for Australians to reconsider indefinite immigration detention.
On September 8, 2015, I was taken from my Manila court hearing into the custody of the Bureau of Immigration – I was deemed an undesirable character.
I was to be indefinitely held in the notorious Bicutan Detention Centre. It is hard to overstate the mental anguish that not knowing an end date causes.
Here, white privilege was a curse, as it came with the expectation of untold, unending wealth. I presented as a gay man who did not engage in corruption – I had refused to refrain from testifying against the police.
This project documents the 499 days of my detainment, telling the story of trauma and introducing the viewer to a world they hope never to have to confront.
Garrie Maguire has qualifications in photography, graphic design, sociology, gender studies, and comparative cultural studies. His photography career has focussed on the performance of masculinity from a multicultural Australian perspective. He gained international acclaim exploring this theme in ToHave&toHold (2000), created for Mardi Gras (and was shown in Adelaide, Auckland and Brisbane) and Gods+Warriors (2002) for GayGames (toured to Seville, Bangkok and Singapore).
Maguire was a finalist and semifinalist in the Josephine Urlick and Margaret Olley awards, the Bowness Prizes and Head On Photo Awards. He has just opened XYZ Photo Gallery in Docklands, Melbourne and continues to amplify unheard voices.
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