Sunday, October 17, 2010


                               Airspace Above The Dam Gouache on paper 30 x 42 cm

Water is a major issue here in Australia, and indeed all over the world. In Australia, newspapers are currently covering the release of proposals to reduce allocations and supply of water to farmers in the Murray Darling food bowl. Farmers are not happy and local communities are worried that reduced allocations will mean loss of jobs and social instability.

As regular readers of my BLOG know, I have long held a fascination for water, how it used, allocated, and costed. I am a farmer's daughter and also lived, for 18 years of my adult life, in Goondiwindi, a small rural town on the border of New South Wales and Queensland. As a child I watched my father stare at cloudless blue skies, and also despair when flooding rains ripped way top soil and spoiled bumper crops. Goondiwindi was the same with farmers staring at the sky, but it was slightly different, because irrigation played a significant part of the rural experience with cotton being a substantial crop grown in northern NSW and SW Qld.

Water is also an issue with the surge in coal mining, particularly coal seam gas extraction [CSG]. Water, is a 'byproduct' of the extraction process, but under legislation this water does not come under the control of Water Resources. So, there are a number of issues now confronting communities at large as well as those immediately affected eg: Dalby [where I grew up] and district. These issues are various, from the potential to reduce underground aquifer levels, to how to deal with the salt water byproduct, to broader issues of adequate infrastructures of all kinds. The major risk, as I see it, is that lack of foresight...lack of stringent risk analysis...will lead to diminished soil viability, and thus the reduction of food growing capacity. I have written  about risk

I have written previously about all of the things I have mentioned above. But, with water being such a current [I like to play on the word 'current' ] I thought I'd make an online 'gallery' of some of my water paintings. This is certainly not all of them, plus I have ideas for more. I will be exhibiting some of the newer ones in my solo exhibition 'Vortex' next year 22 Feb- 6 March. After all... water disappears down the drain pipe in a vortex! But, metaphorically the turmoil, stress and strain fraught by water and its various issues, are akin to what I imagine is the frantic whirling of the outer vortex. I have already written about some of my 'vortex' ideas, but will be writing more as the exhibition evolves.

I would like to make a comment though about farmers. Droughts are devastating, but one outcome is that along with the unlucky, the inefficient farmer is also 'weeded' out. After nearly a decade of drought conditions in rural Australia [following on from sporadic conditions since the late 1960s], those farmers left to produce food and exports, which benefit all of us and our nation, are the most efficient and savvy farmers. They use sophisticated farming techniques based on science and experience, and they understand the financial as well as the environmental benefits of looking after their land. They love the land and know it intimately. I just hope that authorities ask the farmers for advice too...and that they listen.

Enjoy my 'gallery'.....................................and look for the small $ signs and quotes from newspapers. The far and close distance perspectives are important reminders that we must always look and also see!

Blue Gold Gouache on paper 30 x 42 cm

Cyclical Gouache on  paper 30 x 42 cm

Truth Gouache on paper 30 x 42 cm

Water Harvesting Gouache on paper 30 x 42 cm

Great Artesian Basin Gouache on paper 30 x42 cm

Risk Gouache on paper 30 x 42 cm

Phantom Water Gouache on paper 30 x 42 cm

Tendering Gouache on paper 30 x 42 cm

Hope In The Distance Oil on linen 80 x 120 cm

Thank Goodness [It's Raining] Oil on linen 90 x 207 cm

Earth For Sale Oil on linen 120 x 160 cm

Lifeblood Oil on linen 90 x 207 cm

Seeping Into The Intimate Vastness Oil on linen 80 x 120 cm

B Aware Exhibition

B Aware exhibition closes Thursday 21 October, so there are 5 days left for you to see it. St. John's Cathdral, 272 Ann St, brisbane 9.30-4.30 daily. The exhibition is themed on the Millenium Goals. I have 5 works selected for the exhibition.


Keep 22 Feb to 6 March 2011 free! My next solo exhibition 'VORTEX' is on at Graydon Gallery, Merthyr Rd, New Farm, Brisbane.
Here's an image of one of the paintings in the show:

                                               Finding the Light Oil on linen 100 x 70

1 comment:

Audubon Ron said...

Love the gallery. Wonderful work, all of it.