Dwarf Minke Whales

I will gradually add more images and information to this page once I get the chance to stop and review all of the footage.

If you are keen now to learn more about the Dwarf Minke Whales visit the Minke Whale Project that has been researching them for decades.

Some brief points

I sailed from Cairns overnight on July 15 and and spent a few days out along Ribbon Reef 9 and 10 before flying back to Cairns from Lizard Island on July 19, 2021.

My encounters adhered to the Code of Practice for dwarf minke whale interactions in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (read Code) and were supervised by a researcher with over 20 years experience with the whales.

The whales visit the northern Great Barrier Reef each winter and form the only known predictable aggregation of these whales in the world.

The whales control the interactions and often stayed for 2 hours or even many more.

They were first discovered in the 1980’s and are not yet formally described with very little know about them. They are currently regarded as a subspecies of the northern hemisphere minke Balaenoptera acutorostrata.

They usually grow to between 6 and 9 metres in length and weigh several tonnes.

March 4 Justice ADL

About 8,000 gathered in Adelaide to say Enough is Enough at the March 4 Justice rally on March 15 2021.

Here is a small selection of shots of the well organised, respectful, emotional and unfortunately necessary event. 

I am sure there will be more events like this in the future and most likely with larger numbers as the associated issues are cementing themselves as a front of mind for many and also the media.

Re-Mediating the Wild

This is the theme of COCE2021. The 16th Conference on Communication and Environment presented by the International Environmental Communication Association (IECA) online, June 21-24.

The conference brings together artists, practitioners, scholars, students and engaged citizens from around the world to discuss the state of communication related to environmental affairs.

The intent of this theme, Re-Mediating the Wild, is to bring attention to research and practical experience on how best to communicate for the sake of Wildlife and Wild places and address the ways in which communication and culture influence how humans value the Wild and perceive their relationships with the rest of Nature.

In 2019 the theme for the Conference in Vancouver was ‘Water’ and I was fortunate enough to have recently completed an artwork series on rising sea levels and coastal erosion. The series was called Filter and I was able to showcase it there.

The 2021 conference was originally scheduled to be hosted in Hobart, but for obvious reasons that has been postponed to 2022 and this year it will be online. Once again I was fortunate with the theme as I was just completing a new series of work on the human impact on marine environments when submissions to exhibit were requested.

I am looking forward to a few intensive days of listening in and watching sessions and discussion online. Within the conference portal (fee required) delegates can access a specific exhibition space where up to 10 artists from around the world will showcase their artworks and engage via live video chat individually or in small groups.

There are also a number of social sessions in the conference program called Coffee and Cocktails as the timezone you are will determine what is in your tumbler. This is the first time I have formally participated in showing my work online in a live format is I am sure I will learn a lot and no doubt it will be valuable experience for years to come.

The core works I am showing for COCE2021 are the six photographs above and my short moving image work ‘The Ocean was harmed during the making of this film’ (2m16s). These are a selection of works from my solo exhibition ‘Uprising’ that was launched in February 2021.

Best viewed in full screen mode with sound. 2 minutes and 16 seconds.

Re-Mediating the Wild Cover image credit as displayed on homepage.
Photo illustration by Mark Meisner. Original photos by SONY and Diorit are licensed under Creative Commons.

The Ocean was harmed during the making of this film

So this sounds familiar. We have all read something like this in the final credits of a movie.

To clarify things up front this is not a disclaimer for some particular incident that I, the filmmaker, was responsible for. It is about the big picture.

Originally released as a 2 channel video within the solo exhibition ‘Uprising’ at Sauerbier House, South Australia in February 2021 on two flat screens. This re-creation has been produced to share online and specifically for COCE2021 (Conference on Communication and Environment) hosted virtually in June 2021 by the International Environmental Communication Association (IECA).

Best viewed in full screen with sound. 2min16sec

Uprising 6 Feb to 20 March 2021

I really enjoyed my return to Sauerbier House where I exhibited my last solo exhibition Filter in 2018.

The new exhibition Uprising was launched on Saturday 6 February 2021.  The summer weather expected for the Opening was replaced with cooler conditions and the threat of rain. But it was great to have 80 people attend the event that also launched new work by Gilbert Roe.

This new work had been brewing for 18 months prior and influenced by a range of activities. I undertook a Mentorship with Che Chorley and spent time with him in the water in Darwin in August 2020. After a trip out onto the Great Barrier Reef in September I had a 2-week residency at the Tanks Arts Centre in Cairns. I then squeezed in a side trip to the National Sea Simulator and the Coral Core Collection at the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) in Townsville.

The exhibition ran until March 20th. Visit the Uprising exhibition page on this site for more details. Artist Peter Drew was promoted as the Guest Opening Speaker, but had to cancel last minute due to COVID Quarrantine requirements. Unfortunately Peter has not been able to reschedule an alternate date during the exhibition.

The timing is right with this topic as 2021 signals the commencement of the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development. More about that here.

Special thanks to the Bowden Print Group and Prolab Imaging for their support of this exhibition.

BOWDEN_GROUP_LOGO_

ProLab-inc-logo

Adelaide Fringe logo

Sauerbier House Culture Exchange, 21 Wearing St, Port Noarlunga, South Australia.

Sea of People

Here is a preview of a new moving image work installed in the Wash House as part of the Uprising exhibition. Sea of People.

Not only has it been a surprise piece for those that have seen it is was also a surprise for me as it was developed very late in the project and was a considerable step away from the traditional series of photographic prints I had originally conceived.

I have had more questions about how this particular work was made then I have had about the photographs of objects mysteriously suspended in the ocean.

I won’t give away much more now until I will post some footage, if not the whole film. 4m 30sec.

The heritage qualities of the building limit what can be done in the space however it works well to host a simple rustic installation with a louder soundtrack away from the main exhibit.

Gary the Garfish

Gary the Garfish, 2021, Digital vinyl print, 83x84cm.

At the launch of Uprising on Saturday 6 Feb there was such a warm response to this image I felt compelled to share it here along with the back story.

I met Gary at Fannie Bay, Darwin in August 2020. With the guidance and equipment on loan from my mentor Che Chorley, I took my first photographs in the ocean with a professional camera and housing.

It was calm and quiet. We had the beach and water to ourselves mid-afternoon, except one visual blemish. A small dark shape that hovered near the surface in any direction that I pointed the camera. I gave in trying to deceive Gary and chose to photograph the photo-bomber instead.

When you visit Sauerbier House to see the Uprising exhibition you can get up close to Gary adorning a window in the gallery.

Uprising-exhibition-Eastern-Wall featuring Gary the Garfish
Uprising-exhibition-eastern-wall featuring Gary the Garfish

Park Lands Art Prize

I had a great opening night out at the QBE Galleries adjacent to the Adelaide Festival Theatre on Friday 19 March ahead of the public opening on the 20th.

Very surprised to win a Judge’s Commendation that was presented with a certificate and a $1500 cash prize for my work ‘Do not disturb #1’.

This will be one to remember as the exhibition was due to launch pre-COVID Feb 2020 and I had to keep this work made especially for this competition under wraps for a long time.

But eventually the work I had printed and framed July 2019 was finally hanging on a well lit wall in a busy public space.

You can browse all of the Winners of the 2020 Adelaide Park Lands Art Prize.

Venue: Adelaide Festival Centre, QBE Galleries and Festival Theatre Foyer.

Exhibition open Saturday 20 March 11am to 4pm, then Monday to Friday 9-5 (plus during performance times) until Saturday 8 May.

Vote in the People’s Choice Award

Event website

AusOcean Talk

Helping our oceans through technology

/////////This event has happened. Thanks to all of those who participated. Please follow AusOcean for regular updates on their work and for similar opportunities.//////////

Come along and learn about the diverse projects that AusOcean is delivering in South Australia for marine conservation.

From their current Rapid Bay Underwater Live Stream Crowdfund to Oyster Reef Habitat Restoration and various marine health research projects at Carrickalinga and Kangaroo Island among others.

Following an introduction to the Uprising exhibition by Visual Artist Neville Cichon, AusOcean Marine Ecologist, Catherine Larkin, will explain a selection of their projects and the environmental challenges they address. There will be time for questions and the session will be followed by the opportunity for informal discussion about the work of AusOcean and the exhibition.

This is a free event, however due to capacity limits bookings are required via TryBooking.

Saturday 13 February 2021
2.00pm to 3.00pm

Sauerbier House Culture Exchange
21 Wearing Street
Port Noarlunga, South Australia

Galleries are open from 1.00pm to 4.00pm.

More details on the City of Onkaparinga website.

Tanks Arts Centre AiR

Me underwater with camera at the Great Barrier Reef

In September 2020 I was an Artist in Residence for two weeks with the Tanks Arts Centre, Cairns.

This provided me with an intensive period to concentrate on research to create new work for a solo exhibition in February 2021.

The Far North Queensland environment was a perfect match for the marine themed work. I also drove down to Townsville for a private tour of the National Sea Simulator and the Coral Core Collection at the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS).

The Residency included hosting a schedule of Open Studio sessions and presenting an Artist Talk. Both at the in the Cairns Botanic Gardens Visitor Centre.

Schedule and more background listed below.

Artist Talk
10am to 11am Saturday 19 September, 2020
Cairns Botanic Gardens Visitor Centre
Free. But please book due to COVID restrictions of 20 people.

The talk will start with a slideshow of a range of my landscape, nature and abstract photography and then focus on more recent series of work on Climate Change. Including the bushfires focussed Unleashing Hell and rising sea levels and coastal erosion from Filter. Concluding with an overview of new work in development on the human impact on marine ecosystems, questions and discussion.

Bookings open now.

Open Studio
Cairns Botanic Gardens Visitor Centre
10am to 2pm (except Sunday 10am-1pm)
Friday 18 September
Saturday 19 September (including Artist Talk)
Sunday 20 September
Tuesday 22 September
Thursday 24 September
Friday 25 September
Saturday 26 September
Sunday 27 September
 (Tanks Market Day cancelled) Studio will close at 1pm

Outside of these times a static display and looping slide show will be open to the public 7 days per week during normal open hours of the Botanic Gardens Visitor Centre (8.30am to 4.00pm weekdays and 9.30am to 2.00pm weekends)

The focus of the residency is to develop new work on the human impact on marine ecosystems.

Pollution, overfishing, habitat loss and threats posed by climate change such as ocean acidification are just some of the human impacts confronting the health of the ocean and consequently, our future.

What messages do you think the ocean and its inhabitants would like to deliver to us as long overdue feedback about our actions? How are marine ecosystems coping with all of the challenges humans are throwing at them?

While working in the Studio I will be making props to photograph that convey some of these imagined messages, the voice of the ocean, and your input is welcome.

Palm tree shadow on a sandy beach

Mentorship 2020

Mentor and Mentee

In the making since the second half of 2019, the plan has evolved into something far from my predictions.

When I originally approached Che Chorley about a mentorship he was living on the coast about 40km south of my home in Adelaide. However a work and lifestyle change came up that saw Che transfer 3,000kms north to Darwin.

The plan was to seek his support as I embarked on learning new skills and thrashing around ideas for a new work I am developing on the human impact on marine environments.

Timelines were impacted by the pandemic of course, but we adjusted. The plan was modified to have a mix of video call sessions along with a number of hands-on sessions over a short period in Darwin, August 2020.

I am really looking forward to getting in the water and spending time with Che and I will share some of the work in progress as I track towards the Feb 2021 launch of a new solo exhibition.

If you are not familiar with Che Chorley you may recall a story about an adventurous photographer who went on a expedition for over 5 months along the entire South Australian coastline (Land Sea You Me). Other spectacular work is made bobbing in the ocean.

Special thanks to the Helpmann Academy Elevate Mentorship Program for their funding support.

Mapping the Anthropocene

I had originally planned to travel to New Zealand in September 2020 to participate in the Mapping the Anthropocene Symposium presented by the Dunedin School of Art.

Adjusting for COVID-19 I am pleased that I am still able to tune into the sessions online and also have my Fire and Flood showcase displayed on a dedicated flat screen as part of The Complete Entanglement of Everything exhibition.

Mapping the Anthropocene in Ötepoti / Dunedin brings together mana whenua, artists, designers and architects, scientists and speakers from the environmental humanities to present a picture of where we are as we learn to live with and act in the changing environment some call the Anthropocene.

The term refers to the human-induced changes to our world’s systems. The hui is nested within an exhibition at theDunedin School of Art, Te Maru Pümanawa | College of Creative Practice and Enterprise.

The hui also reflects Dunedin School of Art’s 150th anniversary and its role within the cultural life of Ötepoti/Dunedin.Today’s world is troubling and confusing. Together we are entangled in an increasingly complex world thatchallenges our knowledge and our feelings. Artworks can help us to negotiate this complexity as they offer an alternative space to contemplate the global and the local, the self and the wider, collective world shared by human and non-human alike that is so increasingly affected by our actions.

The hui takes place over Saturday and Sunday, with a celebration of the exhibitions on Saturday evening. Allare welcome to the exhibition celebration, while registration is necessary for the conference presentations. Read more at https://artsymposium.op.ac.nz/

Download Exhibition Catalogue.

Verse Magazine

The first Verse Magazine for 2020 is now available for free at all of the University of South Australia campuses.

Edition 32 features a selection of my images along with an interview with me by emerging artist and curator Christina Massolino.

There is also a digital flip book version available to view online now. See below.

Verse Magazine cover edition 32           While you were sleeping #2, 2018, on the cover,

Spreads from Verse Magazine

 
View in Full Screen mode, Edition 32 of Verse Magazine.

Adelaide Hills Landscape Arts Prize

Sail right through me, 2019.

I am very happy that my photograph is a Finalist in the Adelaide Hills Landscape Arts Prize 2019.

I am looking forward to seeing the exhibition of all 40 or so Finalists in a variety of medium at the Opening Event Dec 1st at the Hahndorf Academy in the Adelaide Hills.

South Australian artists were invited to interpret their experience of the Adelaide Hills in ways that highlights and captures their awareness of its dynamic and diverse environment and landscape – natural, rural or urban – and its ever-changing seasons.

‘Sail right through me’ was taken in winter 2019 back where I grew up on the outskirts of Lobethal. In brief I was reminiscing on the still of night that was interrupted by cars. 40cmx60cm C-print on silver halide paper.

This Arts Prize was only launched in 2017 and is presented in alternate years to the biennial Heysen Prize for Landscape at the same venue. More details at the Hahndorf Academy website.

Anthropocene Art Trail

An Anthropocene Art Trail has been installed in conjunction with the R & M McGivern Prize at ArtSpace at Realm and Maroondah Federation Estate Gallery.

Six individual signal box artworks that respond to the theme ‘Anthropocene’ and are inspired by issues surrounding the environment, sustainability and climate change can be visited from 23 November 2019 to 1 February 2020.

I will be doing an artist talk on-site between 12pm and 1pm on Saturday 7 December. Come along for a chat and to also hear from two other artists, Vandal Hype and Carla Gottgens. Bookings and walking trail map links below.

The box I designed features objects I created and photographed for the ‘Unleashing Hell’ series. I also chose to include a newer work. ‘Hairific’ from the 2018 Filter series (visible in E-newsletter image above).

I will post some additional photographs in the week after the artist talk. Thanks now to Maroondah City Council for the preview images above.

Anthropocene Art Trail Map
Artist Talk bookings via TryBooking
More details on the Maroondah City Council Public Art web page

More about the Unleashing Hell series.