Men on Men 2021 Art Exhibition and Competition


Known famously as one of Australia’s longest running gay-owned and operated venues, the Laird Hotel is a safe space and communal meeting place for many LGBTIQA+ people in Abottsford. It hosts a variety of events including the annual Men on Men Art Exhibition and Competition which makes its return this June.

After a trying year for us all, the Laird Hotel is excited to see artists return to the space to exhibit their creations of life during, after and in response to the pandemic. The competition will see a return to expressions of self through painting, stencil, sculpture, street art, etching, drawing photograph, digital mixed media and more after the year that was 2020.

Past participants and winners have expressed their own love for the event and its compassion and respect for the diverse artists they showcase during their exhibition. Men On Men 2017 Winner Jimmy Twin says “I hold the Laird dear to my heart as they really do care about the need to express yourself through art, and they tirelessly promote the artists they host.”

“Winning the MoM art prize in 2017 opened conversations on how to express grief through art and broke down walls I have in expressing myself. Through the MoM exhibitions I have collaborated with great artists, and am proud to call many good friends. I am quite a shy person, and am a proud member of the Laird community as a result of the MoM exhibitions.”

Jimmy is not the only one who has a fondness for this iconic venue, but another previous winner, Sam Hardy spoke on how the Laird has been instrumental in his discovery of self and community.

When I first entered Men on Men I was doing so on a fairly personal level, using it as a bit of a keystone in coming out.  The Laird had been instrumental in being a place where I had finally found people and a community that helped me be at ease with my sexuality,” says Sam.

Many have reflected on how the works showcase the various venues and the unique communities found within. COVID also stressed the importance of such communities as I’d received comments during lockdown from people who had seen the pieces were missing their haunts dearly.”

This year’s exhibition/competition is running from June 5th to the 20th, and applications are open now. Head to the Laird Hotel website to find out more.


Photos by Dean Arcuri