Acts of Ritual, 2021+
A return to the film camera during the pandemic around my adopted home in goldrush-desecrated Djanduk country generated ritual acts of shadow, wind and coppiced fortitude. Sparse regeneration of what were once ecologically rich box-ironbark forests stewarded by the Dja Dja Wurrung is now imperiled by global warming. These hand-made paper contacts from negatives made on an old ‘5×7 inch’ wooden field camera recall imaging methods in use before the forests and people of Djanduk were eviscerated, but of which no photographs are known to exist. In making such intimate, humble indices of wounded country I am seeking to discover if and how sites of profound human and ecological injury, might again be experienced as precious, beautiful—and sacred.
Photographer with camera, Mount Leanganook (Mount Alexander), Victoria, 2020