Title: Who Stood Here, 2019 Medium: Archival postcards printed on 200gsm LIiford Galerie Prestige Fine Art paper with hand stencilled figures Size: 10.2cm x 15.2cm
If only a rock could talk.
The rocks of Kogarah Bay, Blakehurst and Carss Park play an eternal role in the back story of local human life. Who Stood Here asks you to reflect amongst the rocks, to remember and invoke history. It asks white and multicultural Australia to remember all who stood here not just the order in which they arrived.
The rings of a tree tell its age and with carbon dating its age can be attached to a story, a moment in time. Within a story we are gathered into the arms of the trees narrative. Trees grow, move, create and die. They need sunlight and water. Humans can easily identify with the tree and associate human traits and even histories to them. We love them. They give us oxygen, food, timber even medicine. There are ‘hug a tree’ posters and t-shirts.
But what about rocks. Other than geologists, rock climbers and crystal collectors do we really reflect on the back story of rocks. Before the tree, during the tree and after the tree the rock remains. If only they could talk and tell us who stood here. We can get a scientific backstory to the rock. The age it was formed, what part of Pangea it was, had it travelled, the life forms captured in its layers. Unfortunately a rock's inanimate form and cold exterior preclude it from persistent hugging.
Rocks just don’t get as many ‘likes’ as trees. But imagine if they could talk, if they were gossipy, if their memory was a tough as their exterior. Imagine all the people, animals and weather it would recall and regale you with. Now add a little bit of elderly aunt banter over a cuppa tea. Hey Presto, stories from all ages!