Fragments: a virtual environment
This online exhibition is presented on the Onespace Gallery website in partnership with Redland Regional Art Gallery.
Over the past year as I forged my professional practice, my work continued to draw on the complexity of nature from my immediate environment. I have travelled to places far and wide to find inspiration for my printmaking – one that is imbued with personal reflections but also connected to my Indigenous heritage. This year, I had the opportunity to present my first solo show at Redland Regional Art Gallery. However, due to restrictions in response to COVID-19, this exhibition has been postponed, like many other events across the local and global arts sectors.
While our world has become smaller in terms of the spaces we can inhabit, we also find ourselves immersed in the online world of connection and participation. My reinvented first solo show—now titled, Fragments: A Virtual Environment and presented as an online exhibition on the Onespace Gallery website—offers a new space to connect with my audience, and to showcase a selected series of my most recent artworks. The works curated for this online showcase highlight the environments I have encountered, offering my impressions of localised natural worlds through the forum of this global digital realm.
Many of us have experienced emotional fulfilment from viewing or being physically present within natural environments. My connection to nature has never been greater than it is now, and I draw comfort from my relationship with the immediate environment during these times of self-isolation and social distancing. Reflecting back on the places within Australia and overseas that I can no longer visit, I use the medium of print to capture my own impressions and experiences of three unique locations: Siem Reap, Cambodia; Haugesund, Norway; and the Redlands, Australia. Relief print carving is not simply used as a tool for visualising these environments but as a way of translating my visceral impressions as a traveller experiencing an environment for the first time.
Fragments of Redlands
I find that the complexities of nature can be seen within the strong contrast of flora found within a single location. Fragments of Redlands showcases the diversity of the natural Australian environment—from its ocean pandanus to its eucalyptus and the abundance of diminutive flora that surround these iconic trees. Within this landscape there is also a sense of continuous motion, a movement that comes from interactions and co-existence between people and place. While I capture my impressions of place through carved line, the use of digital media allows me to layer the movement of Redlands in some of my pieces, with the motion continuously shifting the viewpoint of the work (the multimedia installation for this body of work will debut at Redland Regional Art Gallery in May 2021).
Fragments of Haugesund
Fragments of Haugesund brings together several unique prints that offer an insight into my encounters with Norway’s native flora and rocky terrain. When I first visited the small coastal town of Haugesund, I was struck by the vibrant yellow and purple flowers that dominate the landscape. Stepping further into the environment, I noticed the intricate line work travelling through grey rock surfaces, with glimpses exposed among the flora and opening out into cliffs of patterned detail. As I trekked up to the surrounding mountain forest, these patterns and colours were laid out before me, but from a place where the trees towered overhead—almost eerie in its atmosphere.
Fragments of Ta Prohm
Fragments of Ta Prohm investigates the shapes and movements created by the strong contrast of structure and nature that is seen in the temples of Angkor Wat, Cambodia. I am fascinated in the minute details of the bricks where the erosion from the environment has allowed new patterns and details to form. The engraving of stories from the Cambodian people within these temples is in confluence with the patterns made from natural erosion. Nature itself has woven a new story that is unique to the Ta Prohm temples.