'Less is more but it's never enough.'

David Bromley found that art appeased the voices in his head and helped him find beauty in the world. So he made the life-changing decision to commit his whole being to something meaningful.

BROMLEY takes us into the world of this prominent Australian artist. With intimate access, we peel away the layers of anxiety, phobias and suicide survival, whilst embracing the humour, energy, and love that is ever-present in the Bromley world. David’s journey is not complete without his wife Yuge and it’s through this powerful partnership that we witness firsthand the fragility of David’s world and state of mind. As the Bromley's live their authentic lives, interviews with friends, critics and musicians add perspectives and insight on creative process, mental health, and commercialisation of art.

Ultimately this is a love story for the ages and a rousing exploration of life and creativity. As David himself says, “art saved my life”. But that’s just the beginning of this story…

  • Sean Patrick McDonald
  • Clare Plueckhahn
    First Love
  • Cathy Rodda
    Iron Sky, Unfinished Sky, Bullets for the Dead
  • David Bromley
    Key Cast
  • Yuge Bromley
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Feature
  • Genres:
    Art, Mental Health
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 34 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    June 15, 2023
  • Production Budget:
    800,000 AUD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Cinefest Oz - Film Prize Finalist
    August 31, 2023
    World Premiere
    Film Prize Finalist
  • Adelaide International Film Festival
    October 20, 2023
    State Premiere
  • Brisbane International Film Festival
    October 29, 2023
    State Premiere
  • Sunshine Coast Film Festival
    October 25, 2023
    State Premiere
  • Byron Bay Film Festival
    Byron Bay
    October 27, 2023
    State Premiere
Distribution Information
  • Madman Entertainment
    Country: Australia
    Rights: Theatrical
    Country: New Zealand
    Rights: All Rights
Director Biography - Sean Patrick McDonald

Sean McDonald is a photographer, filmmaker and BROMLEY will be his debut feature documentary.

After four years of building a relationship the artist as his personal photographer, Sean began work on BROMLEY in 2018. With over 60 days of interviews and footage captured of Bromley and his family, Sean was in a unique position to create a powerful biopic of one of Australia’s most prolific and memorable artists.

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Director Statement

Everyone has an opinion on David Bromley.

I’d heard all the throwaway rumours about David – that he’s a sell-out, or his paintings are just decorative. That he probably doesn’t even paint anymore, or that he paints too much...

And then I saw people from all walks of life overcome with joy upon receiving one of his artworks.

What makes this artist so polarising?

I spent four years getting to know the Bromley’s world by photographing various projects, and in the process I developed a close friendship with David and Yuge. We shared many late nights that would often end up in moving conversations about life’s hardships, and also life’s beauty. This is where I learnt how powerful and unique David’s story is, and that it cannot be told through still images alone. David is an uncontrollable creative wrecking ball, and I knew that a film, rooted in observational documentary would be the best way to show this.

The uniqueness of this story lies within David’s past. How do you turn your life around when all you feel is darkness? The conversation around mental health is taking place more frequently today, though stigma still surrounds sufferers. This story offers a deep insight into David’s inner life and his road to overcoming these challenges.

As David himself says, “art saved my life”. But that’s just the beginning of this story. David upends the art world’s limitations on what an artist should be, and its perception of commercial success.

My vision for this film is for it to be a relentless exploration of life. A story of a lost soul being found again, a story of overcoming an intense darkness to not only find beauty in the world but beauty within oneself too.

There will never be another David Bromley, a unique Australian treasure that audiences are bound to fall in love with and be inspired by. An artist who demonstrates why we shouldn’t fear obsession, and how finding beauty is his life’s work . Most importantly BROMLEY is a story of love prevailing over darkness.