If you are strolling down Oxford Street in Sydney before the end of August near the Town Hall and ‘Paddo RSL’, pop into the Paddington Library to see one of my works from the Unleashing Hell series. The public art initiative was established to showcase a diverse mix of thought provoking works from around Australia.
I am really looking forward to spending 3 months at Sauerbier House at Port Noarlunga, Adelaide to develop new work for a solo exhibition as part of the 2018 Shimmer Photographic Biennale. I will start in July with the 5 week exhibition launching in September.
The opportunity also involves access to the City of Onkaparinga Sustainability Team who will be invaluable for informing the work on local environmental issues related to climate change.
The full arts program has been released and more details about my involvement can be found on page 39. Plan a day out in the Southern Vales for the exhibition opening on the afternoon of Saturday September 22nd.
Another review is in for the 2018 Helpmann Graduate Exhibition. Well worth a read, especially for those who were not able to get to the Exhibition, although officially 2,557 people did get to see it in person.
This series of new work is a dramatic shift in direction from the 2016 Only natural series. Vibrant abstractions of the natural world make way for the gritty reality of a narrative focussing on the ever increasing risk of intense bushfires as a result of climate change.
Climate Change Exhibitions
Two works from this series have featured in Climate Changed focussed exhibitions.
2018 Creative Climate Awards, New York, USA featured ‘How did it come to this?’ in a 4 week exhibition on 42nd St where I was the only Australia included.
2017 Burrinja Climate Change Biennale, Melbourne, Australia featured ‘Words fail us’ and this work is now held in their collection
Climate Change is a slow moving disaster that struggles to compete for our attention. Iconic imagery of polar bears or hurricanes in faraway places do little to connect our day-to-day lives with the climatic changes occurring slowly around us.
We are living with an ever increasing risk of catastrophic bushfires due to climate change. Our fire danger ratings warn us of the potential hazard, but we are experiencing fires that far exceed the worst we could imagine. The fires are beyond categorisation.
My research revealed a striking quote that had such a significant influence on me that it inspired the title of this series of work, Unleashing hell. The full quote comes from an Australian Climatologist who explains that as a result of our inaction on reducing carbon emissions, the resultant climatic changes will disastrously increase the prevalence and impact of bushfires such that ‘we are unleashing hell upon Australia’.
As the single largest contributor of carbon emissions is our coal fired power stations, this has prompted the use of these symbols of electricity consumption. Most of the images are bespoke manipulations of household objects.
Words fail us evolved from the knowledge that the Fire Danger Index applies the rating of catastrophic for conditions at 100 or higher on the scale while some of our most deadly fires have exceeded 180. Factors that influence the severity of bushfires include temperature, rainfall, wind speed and fuel (vegetation). Climate change is magnifying their impact. Radiant heat in major bushfires can be so intense that it can kill people from hundreds of metres away without a flame ever touching them.
Heavy reliance on reverse cycle air-conditioners, as indicated by the fear of power black-outs in summer, is exacerbated by systemically poor house design. The air-conditioner that shields us from summer heat is linked to rising carbon emissions, that is contributing to the climatic changes that fuel our increased exposure to extreme bushfires.
Bushfires do lead to the loss of life and this can only be expected to rise as the intensity and frequency of fires increases due to the impact of climate change. While it may not be the threat of melting ice caps and rising sea levels that motivates us, it may well be the increased prevalence of bushfires that ignite our actions.
The gallery of images displayed here present the four works included in the 2018 Helpmann Academy Graduate Exhibition followed by 3 additional works that were created for the series and previously displayed at the UniSA Visual Arts Graduate Exhibition.
2018 Helpmann Academy Graduate Exhibition Friday 16 February to Sunday 11 March Drill Hall, Torrens Parade Ground
Victoria Drive, Adelaide, South Australia
Long term planning – 50cm h x 40cm w Words fail us – 90cm h x 30cm w Turn down the heat – 60cm h x 40cm w How did it come to this? – 60cm h x 40cm w
I am very pleased to be a finalist in the 2017 Burrinja Climate Change Biennale and contribute to their archive of creative responses to climate change. The exhibition will be held over a three month period in the Burrinja Arts Centre, on the eastern fringe of Melbourne, Victoria from 11 November through to 11 February, 2018.
The exhibition organisers are also hosting a Climate Change Day of Action on Saturday 11 November featuring a full program of talks, presentations, films and stalls.
For more details visit the Burrinja Climate Change Biennalewebsite.
The Backstage Pass exhibition has been acknowledged in the 2017 International Photography Awards.
A selection of 5, presented as a series of photographs, received an Honourable Mention in the Fine Art: Other category. The supporting 24-page book was also acknowledged with an Honourable Mention in the Book (Self-published) : Other category for non-professional photographers.
This short series of images that I created as a homage to Lewis Baltz and his work in the USA in the mid-70’s received an Honourable Mention at the 2017 International Photography Awards in the Fine Art: Other category for non-professional photographers.
Examples from the series of images that received an Honourable Mention at the 2017 International Photography Awards in the Fine Art: Still Life category for non-professional photographers.
Part of a larger series looking at imperfections in the tools of various art departments at University. These lighting gels were found in the Photography Department, although distinctively different in colour, they display defects caused by heat damage, scissors and rough handling. The gloves used by Glass artists were destined for recycling or disposal.
We travel for new experiences and leave the comfort and familiarity of our home town to visit different countries and experience different cultures. We may see and experience things for the first time, sometimes cautiously or with trepidation, being wary of the unfamiliar and unknown. How does a traveller balance being independent, exploring and having new experiences and not falling foul of some scam, health risk or mis-adventure? What is happening in the shadows? What is happening behind doors? What is happening behind you? This is one image of a larger series on this theme compiled from various trips.
This image received an Honourable Mention at the 2017 International Photography Awards in the Fine Art: Collage category for non-professional photographers.
I have been experimenting with other ways of creating abstract imagery.
These examples were captured as single frames of either moving water or static objects. Although they will appear small here online, but I am able to produce photographic prints around a metre in width/height.