My solo exhibition at Goulburn Regional Art Gallery opens on 11 March 2022. On 11 March 2021, I begin my journey on foot, walking from Goulburn to Braidwood to immerse myself in the landscape. Over 6 days I will breathe in the landforms and, later, try and recreate what I feel in my studio.
An idea seeded on the long road through China.
In truth, the genesis for this exhibition probably started while travelling overland from Australia to England, through China, Russia and Eastern Europe. On that journey, I road on horseback to the roof of the world in China and hiked through the Rhodope Mountains in Bulgaria staying in mountain-top monasteries.
It’s there I discovered the real reward in slow journeys. Observed moments are clearer and senses are intensified. With that slow journey mind-set this new body of work will explore the landscape between Goulburn and Braidwood and the people that inhabit that space.
Australian landforms influenced by Chinese landscapes.
In the back of my mind, these works will be influenced by Chinese landscape painting which showed me a new way of seeing and creating the Australian landscape. I love how the landforms dwarf the human activity within them.
They are also partly inspired by Hiroshige and Eisen’s Sixty-nine stations of the Kisokaido; a series of colourful Japanese landscapes of the ancient highway between Edo (Tokyo) and Kyoto.
I want to reacquaint us with the countryside in which we live. I feel we’re blinded to our local environment as we go about our daily lives, through repetition we don’t see it any more.
The journey begins.
I will walk between 15-17 kilometres a day, stopping to sketch along the way and sleeping on the road, in pubs and farm stays. This journey starts in Goulburn and in many ways ends in Goulburn, too with the exhibition next year. See you on the road.