It's the last week for the 2013 Gold Coast Art Prize, where you can see my work in the finalists exhibition until this Sunday. I've had some great feedback on the work, which is always encouraging. I also participated in the kids Summer Series at the gallery, presenting a workshop activity for a few days, which was lots of fun - kids are so incredibly imaginative.
Resource ecology (Conserve - Develop) came about after a residency in 2012 at BigCi in the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage area. I spent four weeks there exploring many environments and components of the ecology. It represents one region of Australia that brings together in close proximity competing interests of, a biodiversity of natural heritage, along-side mineral resources. For a number of years I have visited natural heritage environments and considered where a balance may lie between competition for conservation and development.
Species featured in the artwork include many that characterise the World Heritage area including eucalypts, banksia, Narrow-leaf Drumsticks, Flannel flower, Isopogon anemonifolius and a macrocosma moth. These species sit within elements symbolic of human impacts in the region - power station vents, power lines and coal mining trucks.
I am conscious of the language I use when describing my work and its content. I wondered if 'impact' was the right word to use. Reading the definition in my dictionary -"press firmly together, to force tightly together", it is an apt description of my observations in the Greater Blue Mountains area, where open cut coal mining and World Heritage conservation butt up against one another in not just the physical landscape.