An installation by John Ingleton
Suddenly the world has changed – dreams of faraway places shattered. Families, friends, galleries, museums, mountains and seashores swept off the board.
Nowhere to run to. Nowhere to hide.
Stuck at home with the same old same old.
But, could this really be a blessing in disguise?
Home: Tasmania: Terre de Diemen: Lutruwita: Gondwanaland.
What do we call this place where we live?
What do we really know about this place? About its place in time: historical, political, human, geological, cosmological deep time?
“Tasmania is fortunate to be an island, separated in time and space from much of mainland Australia with remnants of ancient Gondwanaland, of environments and cultures that have disappeared in many other parts of the country. A physical separation that has (mostly) kept us free of the contagion impacting our kin across the water but which has also kept our environment separate for thousands of years. And yet, contagion, like climate change, is unstoppable in the long run.
An elderly Japanese doctor who had survived the second world war once told me that he thought Tasmania was the best place in the world to live because, “when the bombs come it would be the safest place to be”. The bombs haven’t arrived but the destruction of our environment is being wrought nonetheless by our disregard for nature and our impact on the world’s climate.
Perhaps lockdown has been/is a good thing for many of us as it has given us time to look inward to where and how and why we live where we do: to re-evaluate our place in the space we inhabit; to consider with whom and what and how we share this place we call home.
This project started with a simple idea: to create some artist’s books to record a simple journey between two places in Tasmania’s National Parks – Mt field and Lake St Clair – but it has grown into something else.
Any journey is a movement through space and time and as such, it evolves in the processes of planning and doing. Planning requires research, research requires reading, reading raises questions which invites more research. A walk in the bush (doing) also raises questions – what plant is that (click), what bird (click), what fungus (click), what animal makes that scat (click), what type of rocks are these and why are they here (click), how did first nation people survive in these conditions (click – it’s so easy with a digital camera)?
A compilation of images into a book is a superficial way of telling a story about my journey so I have, hopefully, created an environment in this small gallery space which will invite you to ask questions about where and why and how you live in this place you call home.
Henry Reynolds talks of a red line which marks the advancing tide of white settlement. Tim Lowe posits the idea of how squabbling for nectar amongst Australia flowering trees produced the songs that birds sing. Robert Macfarlane and Merlin Sheldrake examine the interconnectedness of everything in the environment. All have been incorporated into this work as a prompt to perhaps change the way we look at our home.
Everything everywhere is connected (like a spider’s web) – tread softly my friends.”
– John Ingleton
Where Song Began Tim Lowe
Underland – A Deep Time Journey Robert Macfarlane
Truth-Telling: History, sovereignty and the Uluru Statement Henry Reynolds
Entangled Life: How Fungi Make Our Worlds, Change Our Minds & Shape Our Futures Merlin Sheldrake
Wednesday 2 December 2021 – Sunday 30 January 2022**
**Installation viewable 24/7
John Ingleton is represented by the Nolan Art Gallery, Salamanca Art Centre
Image Credits: All works by John Ingleton.
John Ingleton. Mt field duo (2021). Digital Print. 12 x 18.7cm