Making a bad situation worse

STRANDED

“Stranded” 2016 Gouache on paper 40 x 60 cm

The refugees and asylum seekers on Manus Island are refusing to leave the compound for fear of their lives. The Australian Government is systematically closing the centre down, shutting off power, ceasing supplies, pulling down fences. The hundreds of asylum seekers remaining stay on in increasingly desperate circumstances.

“As well as the constant threat of being told to move to unsafe housing, the systematic removal of services is also adding to the mental trauma of the men here. The authorities removed the public phones almost two months ago and many men have no contact with their families. The main fences were taken down from Bravo and Charlie compounds and some buildings have been demolished. The canteen is closed to the majority of men and they have stopped providing fruit, sugar, coffee and paper cups. Men who never smoked before and who have become addicted to cigarettes can no longer get them – I cry seeing the men smoking dry leaves and papers.”

https://www.amnesty.org.au/closing-manus-island-inside-perspective/?gclid=Cj0KCQiA0b_QBRCeARIsAFntQ9owOKEvWBYh0D1lxtKKMIbLEy3jvrT5OhVI2iypJdWAzZZ5hq7sUuIaAuGuEALw_wcB

BEHIND THE WIRE No.3

“Behind The Wire No.3 ” 2013 Spray enamel on paper 64 x 52cm

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“Autumn Play” Mixed media on paper laid down on board. Exhibited at the Belconnen Arts Centre in the “Traces 2” exhibition – two were sold.

LEAVES AND STRANGERS

Watching the everyday parade from a park bench in Canterbury, Melbourne. A place from my past were winds spoke in tongues and rogues looted cooly. Mothers and daughters, son’s and lovers, exiles and outcasts, file past the old Rotunda, from which brassy music can be heard once a year in spring.
Not one of these faces ever looks the same twice. Different in every happy snap, from every angle, from a memory glance to shop front spectacle. Different again under a shade tree or squinting into the sun.
Different again under the harsh light of an incandesent eye and a light bulb idea of beuty and friendship. Life is long and stores within the face a myriad of expressions changing with winter and with summer and the in-between moments.
With bright blue skies and dark foreboding formations, the stream of faces pass by the old rotunda just like so many leaves – too innumerable to count. They flutter and fall, get washed down and passed over, but are constantly reborn in vivid, soft and tender hues.
The grounds are seemingly made of leaves, forming an irreducable mass, waiting for little feet in bright yellow gumboots to disrupt their winter sleep. Leaves clog up the guttering of the rotunda, and in wet weather will cause the rain to cascade down its sides. Strangers will briefly gather then , from where the music eminates once every spring, and they will listen to a different kind of music.
Sitting on a park bench in Canterbury gardens watching the everyday parade pass by, the last leaves to fall clinging desperately to their twiggy home, as if the last few bucks in the hands of a teenage scrooge. A toy lies half berried in their midst, playing peek a boo with a ghost.

AUTUMN

autumn good

Keeping Shrine

KEEPING SHRINE

“Keeping Shrine” 80 x 60 cm Mixed media on paper (Finalist in the 2017 Cliftons Art Prize)

 

The Cat Bell

Article cat bellCAT BELLTHE CAT BELL

AGAINST A WINTER SKY

Works painted at the beginning of 2017, in preparation for a large canvas I’m still yet to complete.DSC_4137

THERE IS NO QUEUE WHEN YOU RUN FOR YOUR LIFE

Works from 2016…

Seeking Refuge

seeking-refuge-invite

Exhibition curated by Narelle Phillips of the Tuggeranong Arts Centre.

I am very excited to have been invited to take part in this exhibition. The opening was a great occasion and an opportunity to meet other artists working with the same subject matter.

My main piece in the show “Uncertain Voyage” was also used as the front cover of a new book published earlier this year by Irial Glynn –

Irial Glynn is a Marie Curie Intra-European Fellow at the Institute of History at Leiden University Netherlands. His research focuses on postwar Irish and Italian migration history, global trends in asylum policymaking from a historical perspective and the links between memory studies and migration studies.

book-cover

new-boat

“Uncertain Voyage” 2014 Gouache and enamel on paper laid down on board 122 x 180 cm

Other recent works not included in this exhibition…