Land and body are combined to make an ecology of place in this series of works which explore the relationship between European identity and a particular Australian landscape.
Shown at Helen Maxwell Gallery, Canberra, 2002 and The Church Gallery, Perth, Western Australia, 2003.
Land~Marks is about a particular landscape. It describes a place I started to know more than 30 years ago when I was newly arrived in Australia. It has satisfied my need to belong somewhere. The experience of being there is filtered through my senses, my understandings, and my memories.
In particular I notice texture, colour, pattern. I remember. In spring the coastal hills turn yellow and there is renewal, abundance and soft scented air. In summer the moss turns brown and crunches under bare feet, the black sand defeats my attempts to clean up the kids for visitors and the beat of cicadas accompanies my loneliness. After a fire the ground is charred and spiky; but then a wonder of bright green shoots appears and later there are fields of flowers. In time I come to know this place. After we leave I learn more, how salt rises after clearing and how the first inhabitants have gone, some places still heavy with their silence. This place has given form to me as much as I now try to give form to it. Land and body are combined to make an ecology of place in this work.
Holly Story’s exhibition Land~Marks explores the relationship between European identity and Australian landscape. European culture is represented by the use of stencils of domestic floral textile patterns while the indigenous landscape is evoked through the use of colours and materials derived from it. This is a beautiful exhibition of consistently high quality and it is an intelligent engagement with important issues.
Simon Blond: The West Australian Weekend Extra, May 24 2003, p.15.
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