The landscape shapes my memories.
My memories shape the landscape.
In 1996 I had the privilege of travelling and discovering the beauty and energy of Mutawintji National Park, Broken Hill and Fowlers Gap that are on the traditional lands of Malyankapa, Pandjikali and Wilyakali peoples, in Far Western NSW. I was overwhelmed and emotional at being in this landscape - filled with ancient history and a kaleidoscope of colour and light. I felt like I had discovered the key, or source, akin to having a spiritual experience.
For a long time I was not sure how I could describe and creatively articulate this sensory experience. And so I waited.
In 2017 I unconsciously started to slowly and quietly work on a series drawings and paintings that focused on two places that have shaped my life in a significant way. The aforementioned areas of Mutawintji and Broken Hill, and the Riverina district which is on the traditional lands of the Wiradjuri peoples.
Every school holidays I would travel through the Riverina in family car trips to our destination of Wagga Wagga where my mother’s family originates. I would absorb the rich blues and greens of these fertile farming lands through the car window, and love the intense energy and light that the summer storms would bring. Everything would feel poetic and crisp, and people on the land would rejoice at the rain that brought renewal and regeneration.
Through multimedia drawings, paintings and coil woven objects, my 9th solo exhibition, entitled breathe, creates a multilayered visual landscape that asks us to look at the infinitesimal details of nature, and feel the colour, beauty and poetry that quietly surrounds us in the every –when.*
* At any or all times. The Australian anthropologist W.E.H. Stanner conveyed the idea in his 1956 essay The Dreaming, in which he coined the term ‘everywhen’. “One cannot ‘fix’ The Dreaming in time: it was, and is, everywhen” wrote Stanner, adding that The Dreaming “… has … an unchallengeable sacred authority”.
click here to view a virtual tour of the exhibition that was exhibited in March 2020 at Chrissie Cotter Gallery Sydney