Farming Climate


Researching the responses to climate change by the agriculture sector in regional Victoria

Warracknabeal Court House has been adapted to accommodate an Artist in Residence Program that enables selected artists to immerse within the local community and create enduring artworks that respond to the distinctive environment and landscapes of Victoria’s Wimmera-Mallee country. This creative adaptation was made possible through a collaboration between Working Heritage x Monash Art Design & Architecture (MADA) x Yarriambiack Shire Council.

This was the first stop in my new climate art project focussed on regional Australia and I am looking forward to making connections with the local community and exploring the region.

As climate change is having a strong influence on farming practices, I am interested in the actions being taken such as adaptation and use of technology. I wish to connect with locals who have both an interest in the impacts and responses to climate change and a willingness to share their thoughts and knowledge through a phone call, meeting or site visit.

My intended outcomes would be to commence to release a series of new artworks from the second half of 2025.

There is plenty more to read and see on this website but in brief I am an Adelaide based photographic visual artist specialising in climate, environmental and social issues.

Previous individual series of artworks I created focussed on bushfires, coastal erosion and ocean health. Now I am turning my attention towards to farmers and associated organisations to see how they are responding to the challenges of climate change.

With my base at the Warracknabeal Court House I am aimed to connect with people in the region, predominantly in the Hindmarsh and Yarriambiack Shires. I listed a number of towns in the area that form a boundary of my preferred range to travel. 

I was in Warracknabeal from Tuesday 30 April to Wednesday 15 May inclusive. This marked the formal commencement of this project I anticipate will run through to late 2025/early 2026.

This residency is proudly sponsored by Working Heritage.

This is just a brief sample of the different sights I saw as I travelled the region. From the activity of sowing with the first rain in May, the Birchip Bulls on a Saturday afternoon and a tour of the Horsham SmartFarm.

12th Prospect Portrait Prize

I am very pleased to share that a new photograph of mine was a Finalist in the longest running portrait prize in South Australia.

The Opening Event on December 8 was a sell out, and there is now a live stream of the formalities on Facebook that you can watch via the Newmarch Gallery Facebook page.

Congratulations to all of the other 33 finalists and for to the Newmarch Gallery Team for putting on a great show.

Newmarch Gallery
Payinthi, 128 Prospect Road
Prospect SA 5082

Artist Statement – Fade
Is ageing like a photocopy of a photocopy of a photocopy …?

This is a recent portrait of my 94-year-old father. At his age it is no surprise that a condition such as dementia is something to contend with. More recently he had a stroke and lost his ability to talk for a couple of months.

With these challenges whirling in my head, I conceived this portrait that represented a deterioration that I was witnessing, along with the path from here that I was contemplating.

For those interested in the technical aspects of this photograph I can provide some key details. Effects were created in-camera in a single frame. Hand-held long exposure using available light. A combination of stillness and movement of the camera during the exposure provides clear details contrasting with the blurred. This is similar to a technique I have been applying recently to landscape photography.

Walk for Yes 23

Thousands walked together in Adelaide on 16 Sept at the Walk for Yes event.

A beautiful day and great atmosphere. Here are a selection of the hand crafted signs on display. Collage, signwriting, painting and good use of food wrapping from a supermarket.

Other pages that might be of interest on this website are linked below.

March 4 Justice, 2021

Midnight Oil music video clip

Power of Protest

Extended until July 2024

Power of protest exhibition

The Power of Protest: Young People’s Climate Action is a new display in the Centre of Democracy. The display features placards made by students for the school strikes in October 2021 alongside photos of the protests taken by photographer Neville Cichon.

The School Strike 4 Climate (SS4C) movement in Australia coordinated Friday school strike action around the country in 2021 to allow young people the chance to be heard by policy makers. It is a part of the international movement that has seen millions of school students around the world take to the streets. Through the strikes, students use people power to have an impact on public opinion and decision makers. Active citizenship, in this case in the form of public protest, is one way that youth who want to engage in the political landscape can have an impact before they turn 18.

Placards are a succinct and creative way to share an individual voice within a mass action. Come in to the gallery to see not only the placards made by students, but to read, in their words, why they chose their message and why they joined the protest.


After photographing climate protests for a couple of years I developed a curiosity for the placards on display and the ideas, people and motivations behind them.

I arranged to set up a stall at the Festival of Climate Action that coincided with the School Strike 4 Climate march in October 2021. At the end of the formal march there was an open invitation for people to donate the placards that they had just used to march down King William Street. I also asked them to write down a brief response to two questions. Why did you choose this placard design? and Why did you attend the protest?

When I did this I only had general ideas of what I might do with the placards and text gathered. After exploring various options I am very pleased to now have a formal display established at the Centre of Democracy in Adelaide for 12 months, until July 2024. The display will be visited by the general public and school groups in particular. Schools will also be encouraged to access an online educational resources to support their exploration of the themes of the power of protest and active citizenship.

Extended until July 2024

SAT & SUN 12-5PM
(Closed Public Holidays)

The Centre of Democracy
Institute Building
Corner of North Terrace and Kintore Avenue
Adelaide, South Australia.

Access tip– Press button on wall to open the heavy external door.

Google Maps

This event has happened – OPENING EVENT – 14 JULY, 2023

OPENING EVENT – Come along to the Centre of Democracy to hear a Q & A session with one of the leaders of the Adelaide chapter of the School Strike 4 Climate (SS4C) movement. The SS4C movement in Australia coordinated Friday school strike action around the country in 2021 to allow young people the chance to be heard by policy makers. It is a part of the international movement that has seen millions of school students around the world take to the streets.

Anjali Beames will share with us her insights into active citizenship for under-18s and how and why she got involved in the movement for climate action. Hear some of her reflections on youth engagement with politics and why you don’t have to wait until you’re 18 to have an impact in your community.

This event is connected to new display The Power of Protest: Young People’s Climate Action. 15 Placards made by students for the strikes will be on display alongside 17 of my photographs of the protests. The display will be in the Centre of Democracy gallery from 14 July 2023 until 26 January 2024.

Two workshops including badge making to be announced for 11th and 24th Jan
The first suited to 5+ and the second 12+

Burrinja Climate Change Biennale

After a 5-year break the Burrinja Climate Change Biennale returned 3 December 2022 until 17 Feb 2023 with an Award Exhibition at the Burrinja Gallery.

I was a finalist in the last 2017 Burrinja Climate Change Biennale, and was very pleased to be able to exhibit there again.

From the scientific to the fantastic, the cultural to the creative, the Burrinja Climate Change Biennale brought together diverse voices, practices and perspectives to interrogate and speculate on the future we so desperately need.

I was the only South Australian participating in the Award Exhibition with over 40 artists spanning a range of art forms.

Bigger than ever, the Biennale featured a national cohort of 60+ artists. The project included ‘Live Actions’ across the Yarra Ranges, A moving image program, and various exhibitions across multiple venues including Art Centre Warburton, Yarra Ranges Regional Museum and The Memo, Healesville.

In addition to my photograph ‘Climate report’ from the Uprising series my short film ‘The Ocean was harmed during the making of this film’ was screened in the Award exhibition gallery.



Burrinja Cultural Centre 
351 Glenfern Road, Upwey, Victoria

Climate Report, 2021. First exhibited in a solo exhibition ‘Uprising‘ at Sauerbier House Culture Exchange, SA.

Artwork statement
The ocean is a recreational playground for many Australians. Gazing, paddling, splashing, fishing.

The pleasure is on course to subside as we experience coastal erosion through rising sea levels and the loss of marine ecosystems through increased water temperatures.

Temperature is core to impacts like rising sea levels and the destabilisation of our future weather patterns.

‘Climate Report’ upends a symbol of our relaxed relationship with the ocean to become a dramatic indicator of current environmental changes happening slowly around us.

This artwork is just one from the ‘Uprising’ series. You can see more of the works on the Uprising exhibition page.

The Burrinja Climate Change Biennale is delivered in partnership with Yarra Ranges Council, Yarra Ranges Regional Museum, and Your Library.

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

Want to read more about the Impacts in the film?
Here is some additional information and links for further reading. The majority of links are to the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) that I visited back in 2020.
(You can either click on the link that’ll open in a new Tab, or copy and paste).

Ocean acidification results from seawater absorbing excess CO2that has been emitted into the atmosphere. The CO2 dissolves in the seawater where it changes the chemistry.

“We know now that oceans are taking up about 23% of the excess CO2from the air. They actually provide a service to humanity by slowing climate change. But the price to pay is that the seawater’s carbon chemistry is changing, and we didn’t know it was happening in dynamic coastal waters at such fast rates,” Dr Fabricius said.

Coral bleaching is a coral’s response to stressful conditions and can result in its death.

The 2020 Status of the World’s Coral Reef Report showed 14% of the world’s coral reefs have died since 2009, and coral bleaching caused by marine heatwaves have driven this loss. This pressure is predicted to continue with climate change.

Increased runoff of sediment, nutrients and contaminants from the land has lowered coastal water quality and marine ecosystem health across northern Australia, including the Great Barrier Reef.

Increased sediment runoff ultimately increases sedimentation on coastal reefs, reduces the clarity of coastal waters and restricts the growth of light-dependent plants and animals. Increased nutrient inputs stimulate algal growth on reefs and in reef waters, increase the occurrence of coral disease, and may influence crown-of-thorns starfish outbreaks.

Unregulated disposal of wastes and other materials into the ocean degrades marine and natural resources and poses human health risks.

Deep-sea mining is the process of extracting and often excavating mineral deposits from the deep seabed. The deep seabed is the seabed at ocean depths greater than 200m, and covers about two-thirds of the total seafloor. Research suggests deep-sea mining could severely harm marine biodiversity and ecosystems.

AIMS estimates that average yearly inputs of nitrogen from the land have nearly doubled from 23 000 to 43 000 tonnes over the past 150 years, while phosphorus inputs have tripled from 2400 tonnes to 7100 tonnes. In wetter years, these inputs can be many times higher.

The ocean generates 50 percent of the oxygen we need, absorbs 25 percent of all carbon dioxide emissions and captures 90 percent of the excess heat generated by these emissions. It is not just ‘the lungs of the planet’ but also its largest ‘carbon sink’ – a vital buffer against the impacts of climate change.

The ocean is central to reducing global greenhouse gas emissions and stabilizing the Earth’s climate.

However, increasing greenhouse gas emissions have affected the health of the ocean – warming and acidifying seawater – causing detrimental changes to life under water and on land, and reducing the ocean’s ability to absorb carbon dioxide and safeguard life on the planet.

Over the past century, habitat loss has been the most common cause of extinction for freshwater fish in the United States. Many saltwater fish are also in decline due to habitat degradation. When habitats are damaged or lost, they are difficult and costly to restore.

The number of overfished stocks globally has tripled in half a century and today fully one-third of the world’s assessed fisheries are currently pushed beyond their biological limits, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

The study found UV light changes the impacts of the chemical compounds in petroleum oil – amplifying their toxicity by an average of 30% across the early life stages of coral. At its most extreme, UV was able to increase the potency of oil by 94 times.

Ocean pollution can also be found far beyond national jurisdictions in the open oceans, the deepest oceanic trenches, and on the shores of remote islands. Ocean pollution knows no borders.


Extreme rainfall events will increase, with larger amounts of low-salinity freshwater and sediment extending further out from the coast.

Shipping comprises about 90 percent of world trade by volume, contributing approximately twelve percent of the total marine pollution arising from human activities on the ocean.

Coal dust enters the marine environment at loading and storage facilities when it is blown or washed into the sea, during transport, and in rare shipping disasters.

Dwarf Minke Whales

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.
A short preview of one of my encounters in mid-July 2021.

Gold Coast Pro

2023 Gallery

2022 Gallery

I flew into a very grey and wet Coolangatta for the World Surf League Challenger Series Gold Coast Pro at Snapper Rocks in May 2022.

I arrived on Day 3 of the event, less than 2 hours before Kelly Slater was about to compete in his 2nd, and last, formal heat of the event. He wore the green top in that heat and just before sunset on Day 4 he wore the white top in the Legends Heat.

Bettylou Sakura Johnson at the Gold Coast Pro, Snapper Rocks, May 2022. Experimenting with long exposures to capture the motion of the athletes and ocean.

Some out takes from the grey days at Snapper Rocks, Gold Coast in May, 2022.

Prospect Portrait Prize

Need a hand, 2021, 1mx1m, pigment print.

I am super pleased to be selected as a finalist in the 11th Prospect Portrait Prize. Open to entries nationally, a shortlist of 34 entries will be on display at the Newmarch Gallery in Adelaide.

The longest running portrait prize in South Australia, the Prospect Portrait Prize is a non-acquisitive juried exhibition of contemporary portraits in any medium.

Opened on Friday 10 December 2021 and runs until 25 January 2022.

Artist statement

The generosity of my photographic mentor Che Chorley is as immense as the ocean he loves to photograph in. He repeatedly submerged for extended periods to simulate an object relevant to a photographic concept for ‘Uprising’ I was developing.

The encouragement and advice flowed as we travelled in his car, with his photographic equipment, to Fannie Bay and the waterholes of Litchfield National Park, Northern Territory. This image reminds me of his big-heartedness and our shared sense of humour.

The Vains band

Adelaide band, The Vains, are a ‘femme, patriarchy smashing rock quartet’.

Here are some shots of their performance at The Crown and Anchor Christmas Eve show. The cosy band room allows close access to their high energy performance, inches away from the speaker stack.

The Vains links

Flotsam Festival

I am looking forward to being in the Gold Coast in the first two weeks of May and discussing the potential of photography in ocean-activism. I am also very keen to see as much of the huge Flotsam Festival program as I can. All of the details below.

Flotsam Festival is a two-week visual surf imagery tsunami hitting the Gold Coast from 1-14th May, 2023.

Staged like a giant interactive arts trail, the festival pays homage to the Southern Gold Coast’s world-class breaks and iconic coastline through film, photo, and live music events inspired by sand and sea.

Flotsam Festival brings together surfers, filmmakers, photographers and ocean lovers with pop up film and photography events peppering precincts in Burleigh, Palm Beach, Currumbin, Tugun, Kirra and Coolangatta.

Programming will include a maelstrom of both free and ticketed events – from film premieres, workshops, in-depth film makers and photographer panels, live music and visual experiments, digital projections, and photographic exhibitions staged indoor and out.

Flotsam x Climate Community Night, Mo’s Desert Clubhouse
Panel exploring how art can intersect ocean-activism through mediums like photography and film.
6.30-8.00pm Wed 3 May, MO’s Desert Clubhouse, Burleigh Heads, QLD.

FLOTSAM FESTIVAL website – Full program out now.

This pair of images were created during an Artist Residency on the coast of South Australia. Created in response to my research that revealed that some of our popular recreational beaches could be without sand due to rising sea levels.

Stobie Pole Project

Bringing art to the suburbs with the Stobie Pole Project – CityMag

Emerging artists make their mark using an SA icon – INreview

The Stobie Project Guide and Map – Meet the artists
MAP – Find the poles

Preview of development and installation

Post launch

The Stobie Pole Project promo image

(Photo of Dave Court by Che Chorley)More details at my Artist Facebook Page. I am very pleased to share that I am one of four South Australian emerging visual artists that have been selected to take part in the SA Power Networks Stobie Pole Project.

Orientation to the project commenced in May 2022 and the formal launch with Artist Talks etc are in October.

For an overview you can read more at the Helpmann Academy website.

What is a Stobie Pole? For those of you not from South Australia, they are Power Poles.

Map of stobie pole locations
Map of stobie poles to be used in the public art project to be installed in the western suburbs of Adelaide.
Stobie pole project


Climarte A call to Art

  • Climarte Poster Project Anthropocene you are here
  • Climarte Poster Project Circa 2030

The 3rd Poster Project by Climarte was launched in Melbourne on 26 February, 2022. Following an open call to artists to create an original poster design, 10 works were selected and pasted up around the streets of Melbourne.

An online gallery of shortlisted entries was also launched and you will find two of my poster designs there. See all entries.

Read more about the Forum/Launch event ‘Why a Call to Art’ and the Climarte Poster Projects on their website.

To harness the power of the Arts to communicate the Climate Emergency in all its manifestations to mobilise the public to demand immediate effective action; a transition to zero emissions and the drawing down of legacy carbon at emergency scale and speed, before 2030.

Midnight Oil We Resist Video

For the video clip to ‘We resist’ by Midnight Oil, they put a call out for people to submit images of protests.

One of my images is used in the video, and while at their concert at the Riverstage Brisbane in April 2022, I was able see it displayed as a backdrop to their performance of ‘We resist’ at the opening of the concert.

Lead singer Peter Garrett is up the back left, raising his arm.

It is bizarre to know that this image will now tour around the world with them as they travel to Canada, USA, NZ and Europe.

Midnight Oil We Resist VIDEO on YouTube

Midnight Oil Resist TOUR

March 4 Justice Gallery

PS Sorry about the quality of the smart phone shots

Festival of Climate Action

The School Strike 4 Climate Friday October 15, 2021 kicked off a long term project for me documenting climate protests. As we head towards Glasgow and a Federal election I expect ample opportunities to hit the streets with my camera.

A unique twist to this project is the collection of Placards from protests that I will use as part of an exhibition in late 2022.

I had a table in the square after the SS4C March for donations of unwanted placards to be made. Special thanks to the Festival of Climate Action for giving me a spot next to the Food Trucks.

There was a huge program of the Festival that followed through to Sunday afternoon.

For those visiting this website for the first time I am an Adelaide based Visual Artist who has produced three exhibitions previously on Climate Change themes ( bushfires 2017, coastal erosion 2018 and the human impact on marine environments 2021).

Look out for announcements about my location at future events or feel to send me an email to

I am also happy to hear from people interested in working with me on the creation of behind the scenes photos of placard making sessions and/or interviews about your involvement in climate protests. Likewise just send me an email. My preferred timeline is anytime during late 2021 and the first half of 2022.