Frederic Courbet, John Dobson, Jon Johannsen, Kurt Sorensen
Image: Frederic Courbet
As time progresses, the natural and man-made spaces surrounding us develop and change. From the ancient to the modern, the stories of change are innumerable.
This exhibition sees the four artists explore how time has affected the spaces around them in very distinct and different ways.
Frederic Courbet is a photographer and filmmaker with over fifteen years international experience in commercial photography and photojournalism. Courbet in December 2015, joined acclaimed African photographer and author Nigel Pavitt on a month-long journey in Ethiopia, one that became a photographer's pilgrimage as they drove off-road, caught boats, hiked and hauled themselves plus equipment up goatskin ropes to reach the most remote holy sites and meet their custodians. Courbet explores the Ethiopian rock hewn churches, cut out of mountain-sides in 6AD in the heartland of ancient orthodox Christianity - best known for the sites of Lalibela, Gondar, Axum and Gheralta.
John Dobson takes images that could be anywhere in any suburb of any big city or small town in Australia. They reflect how he perceives suburbia after growing up in suburban Melbourne to living overseas in cities for 10 years of his life. When returning to the suburbs, the feeling of familiarity is overwhelmed by estrangement. They are coloured by his ambivalence. ‘I am literally on the outside looking in on these metaphorical castles. There is often a fence blocking my view, but it may as well be a moat. There is even a hint of Munch’s paranoia. As I point my camera, I feel the windows staring back at me.’
Jon Johannsen as an architect and urban designer has had an enduring interest in both urban and rural environments, and enjoyed finding and photographing subjects with quirky attributes, graphic qualities or showing a process of aging or change. Sites undergoing transition or decay such as the industrial relics of Glen Davis in the Capertee Valley west of the Blue Mountains, the now demolished railway goods buildings at Alexandria and the former Walter Burley Griffin designed incinerator at Pyrmont, all have a sense of desolation overlaid with a raw spatial abstract.
Kurt Sorensen is focused on the inherent fears and anxieties that have historically permeated through European interactions with the Australian landscape. The work is created through researching historical colonial texts such as newspapers, state archives or journals and looking for specific instances of reported misadventure in the Australian landscape.
Curated by: Daniel Grendon