September 20, 2023
Peta Clancy has been selected as a finalist in the Banyule Award for her work ‘Here Merri Merri Lies’! The prestigious national art prize was directed by the theme of ‘Nhalinggu Bagung’ for 2023, which translates to ‘come gather’ in the Woiwurrung language, and recognises that Reconciliation requires us to come together and build a future for all Australians.
Through manipulated photography, Clancy calls attention to the way that the past and present are layered within the landscape. She aims to reconstruct and bring to light histories that have been missed, veiled or denied, re-focusing our perspectives on Indigenous sites of significance. ‘Here Merri Merri Lies’ is a one-off double exposure that depicts the Birrarung and Merri Creek confluence in Victoria, Australia: a culturally significant part of Country for Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation.
Peta’s practice reflects on the history and cultural memory embedded in Place as she documents the interactions of wind and light across time. In turn, the photograph reveals the complexities of recording Country and the impossibilities involved with accurately documenting narratives from the past two hundred and fifty years (since invasion), around 80,000 years (for Traditional Custodians), or 100 to 400 million years (the age of the geological formations).
Image caption: ‘Here Merri Merri Lies’, 2023, pigment inkjet print, 150 x 118
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