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Exhibitions >>Secret World

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Exhibition Title: Secret World:Carnivorous Plants of the Howard sand sheet. , 2015

Exhibition venue: Nomad Art Gallery. NT

Secret World, Nomad Art Gallery

Artist Statement

In exploring the Howard sand plains we participated in four interrelated processes 1. We considered the multiple perspectives given to this envisioning Nature: from the artists to the scientists, the sand miners to the quad bikers, all plants and animals living on the plains, and in particular the bladderworts. We thought about how each of these visions impacts on the way we name Nature, calling it a mine lease or crown land, considering it as protected habitat or recreational zone. As we visited sites and framed information though drawing, listening, discussing and documenting we processed the speed at which Nature is transformed. As a delicate ecological phenomenon the sand sheets cannot be recovered easily once destroyed; our feet squelching into the moist ground felt just as invasive as the irreversible diggers. However the other changes evident were the biological, chemical and physical transformations occurring prolifically around us as organisms grew, lived and died. Finally through the affects and effects of transforming Nature we considered the life cycle of the Utricularia with its specialisations for survival in the low nutrient habitats; the interconnectedness to the water table with the greater hydrology of the region and the affects mining can have on effectiveness of this process.

Back in my studio the marking of my time at the Howard sand plains was realised through a series of works which engage with the invisible, delicate distinctions that make this place so unique. Like many of my installation works I begin with water creating individual 'specimens' from pulp. The drying of this on the horizontal drop sheet evokes symmetry with the sand sheets where plants cling to the topsoil maintaining a delicate web of roots that build an island habitat. Transferring my 'collection' to the picture plane enables a refocusing on the botanical and a returning to the watery world of the carnivorous bladderworts.

1. Halsey, M. (2006). Deleuze and Environmental Damage - Violence of the Text, Ashgate Punlishing Ltd.