My Body of Work titled Collapse explores the destruction of the Capertee Valley, known also as the Gardens of Stone National Park.
Capertee Valley is a beautiful, natural environment located two and a half hours west of Sydney. The Capertee Valley is surrounded by natural rock formations called pagodas which protrude from the cliff lines throughout the valley. The valley is scattered with old mining relics, built by those miners whose ruins tell the story of those who visited the landscape before us.
Despite the beauty of such a landscape, it is worrying that the pagodas and cliffs in some areas have been undermined by coal mining. Pillars were left in place in order to limit the subsidence of the natural landform. It has since been revealed that these supporting pillars will be extracted, undoubtedly destroying the many surrounding cliffs and pagodas of Capertee Valley. My work aims to highlight the beauty of the Gardens of Stone National Park and encourage people to reconsider the industrial, ecological and physical collapse happening in our society today.
I drew from various different artists, the most influential ones being Henry Gold, Jaime Plaza and Tobias Buche. Henry Gold and Jaime Plaza both heavily explore landscape photography and have also photographed the Capertee Valley. These artists helped influence my style of photography as well as build my subject matter. I also drew on Tobias Buche’s photography to inform my layout and composition—taking inspiration from his black and white artworks which contrast the subject matter.
My Body of Work is made up of multiple elements such as printmaking, photography and film. I chose to do printmaking as the faded and almost antique look of the prints represents the impending destruction and disappearance of the surrounding environment. To complement this, I used photography to demonstrate the current beauty of the Capertee landscape and to really highlight the importance of maintaining such a unique ecosystem. The film demonstrates the monumental scale of the National Park while also engaging the audience by educating them on what’s going on in the Capertee. All mediums combine, with the aim of connecting my audience with the title.