graphite and biro drawings, collographs and felt
Kangaroo Encounters: Public and Private
A childhood memory of my first day at a new school, Malta, a British School. The first comment directed at me was along the lines of,” Australia, you come from Australia, the place at the bottom of the world where they have kangaroos, animals that hop (followed by a demonstration) and then peals of laughter as if the whole thing was ridiculous.”
At art school I started and ended each day with a 40 minute drive through the country outside Canberra, it was towards the end of a long drought and each day without fail I would see a dead kangaroo sprawled on the side of the road, road kill.
Tapatjatjaka Arts Centre, central Australia, alone in the place I wandered around allowing the art works to seep into me. What struck me was a sense of connectedness embedded in the works; people, landscape, and animals, they all belonged together, were part of the other. There was a collection of kangaroo sculptures (Johnny Young) made out of copper wire; the wrapping and tangling of the wire making the form. I tried drawing these kangaroos, drawing from the sculptures, understanding and feeling the form through the wire wrapping. This brought me back to my own personal relationship to the kangaroo, how it continues to reside in my psyche and affects my identity and sense of belonging.
Exhibition interview with Alex Mullarky at wildmelbourne.org