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Presentation on theme: "POSTCARDS FROM THE RIM BEN BOHANESEAN DAVEYSTEPHEN DUPONTDAVID HEMPENSTALL GARY LEE JON LEWIS 20 September – 20 October 2012 Goulburn Regional Art Gallery."— Presentation transcript:


2 Education Kit This education kit has been comprised for the exhibition Postcards from the Rim, exhibited at Goulburn Regional Art Gallery 20 September – 20 October 2012. Compiled by Michelle Stuart, Education Officer Goulburn Regional Art Gallery. The education kit is an online resource that can be used by students on their own laptops or projected onto a screen for class viewing. The internet is required for all links and video connections. Symbol: Are hyperlinks to websites related to the topic – click on icon to link to website Underlined words are also hyperlinks

3 Postcards From The Rim Today millions of people are embracing photography through the proliferation of smartphones: Flickr, Facebook, Instagram, Twitpic, and other instant ways of recording images, and using it most recently (Egypt and Syria) as tools for change, especially in war zones. We are all familiar with how quickly images of happening events are beamed into our immediate world, almost the second they happen. Digital technology and the proliferation of photographys accessibility through social media has only heightened the role of Photography as an Art form. One of the outcomes of this rapidly developing technology is that the work achieved with the more traditional film and Single Lens Reflex camera is being given the artistic recognition it has been longing for. Contrary to expectations, the proliferation of digital media and video technology has only cemented the place of quality contemporary art photography. proliferation contemporary Postcards from the Rim brings together the works of six award-winning contemporary and cutting edge Australian photographers in a rare insiders view into our nearest neighbours. - Jane Cush, Director, Goulburn Regional Art Gallery

4 PHOTOGRAPHY AT A GLANCE 1826 – First permanent image - French inventor Joseph Nicephore Niece uses a camera obscura to produce what he calls a heliograph (sun drawing)camera obscura heliograph 1839 - Louis Daguerre patents the daguerreotype.daguerreotype. 1839 – John Herschel demonstrates hyposulfite of soda as a fixer, and makes the first glass negative.fixer 1850 – first photograph printed on paper 1861 – first colour photograph 1877 – first action photographs by English photographer Eadweard MuyBridge – the beginnings of cinematographycinematography

5 1888 – First Kodak camera released under You press the button we do the rest 1900 – Kodak Box Brownie releasedBox Brownie 1931 – Electric flash invented and patented 1936 kodak releases Kodachrome 35mm film – that became widely used and commercially successful film 1946 – first photograph taken from space How to make a Daguerreotype First motion picture horse

6 1947 – first Polaroid camera invented by Edwin H. Land. 1963 Polaroid introduces polacolor – first instant camera film that produces colour photos 1975 – first digital camera invented by Steven Sasson 1990 – Adobe photoshop released 1991 – first commercial digital camera released 1992 – web standards for photographs developed for viewing images over the internet. 2000 – first camera phone released by Sharp History of Photography

7 2003 – myspace – social and photo sharing online 2004 – Face book social and photo sharing online 2005 – Flickr – photo sharing 2011- Google Art Project Milestones in Photography (National Geographic) Google Art Project

8 Documentary photography Documentary photography refers to a popular form of photography used to chronicle significant and historical events. The photographer attempts to produce truthful, objective, and usually candid photography of a particular subject, most often pictures of people. These photographs are often used as historical documentation or evidence of a particular situation or event. 1 Documentary photography (

9 Photojournalism Photojournalism is an area of photography dedicated to taking accurate shots of current events. The basic mission of a photojournalist is to take pictures to accompany a news story. 2 Photojournalism is primarily a practical form of photography, especially given the importance of maintaining the integrity of the scene. However, the field of photojournalism may also be considered to be an art form in its own right. Scene composition, choices of angles and lens choices all determine the impact and power of the resulting shots. 3composition Photojournalism (

10 Black and White Photography There has been a recent revival in photographers taking black and white photographs. Before the invention of colour film, black and white photographs were the only choice for photographers. Today, black and white photography allows the photographer to create atmosphere, focus only on particular areas of importance. It all depends on the subject and what the photographer wishes to express. Photojournalists often use black and white photography. 4 Black and white photography (

11 BEN BOHANE Papuan boy with pearl-lugger headress, used in kastom dances remembering the pearling days of the early 20th century. PNG 2006 © Copyright Ben Bohane /

12 Artist Statement Since 1994 I have journeyed through the Black Islands of Melanesia and other parts of the Pacific, documenting kastom, cults and conflict. Sometimes this has meant covering Australia's secret wars and being on the other side of my own government. It remains the most under-reported region of the world but not for any lack of rich stories to tell. Unfortunately Australia's mainstream media largely ignore our immediate region despite the rest of the world expecting us to do so comprehensively. This is a region that can only be understood when we take off our secular goggles and immerse in the spirit world of these beautiful and strange islands, a region that has been described as "the most complex religious panorama on earth". As an Australian (resident in Vanuatu) I consider myself a Pacific islander too - it is a way of seeing and connecting - and I am troubled by the rather grandiose notion that Australia is a continent, rather than just a large Pacific island. This has blinded Australians to the fact that we are forever connected to the rest of the Pacific by the blood and songlines of our own indigenous Australians and the historical, military and colonial legacy of Australia's involvement with its nearest neighbours. As we enter the Pacific Century, it is time for Australia to find a new Pacific Dreaming, engage with its island neighbours more deeply and at last understand its place in the world. kastom, songlines

13 The Black Islands - Spirit and War in Melanesia, is a multimedia show by photojournalist Ben Bohane with music by David Bridie and Not Drowning Waving. Takes you on a journey through kastom, cult and cargo cult movements across Melanesia, from East Timor to West Papua, PNG, Bougainville, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji and New Caledonia as well as black Australia.

14 SEAN DAVEY 8 Mile Settlement, Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea 2009 Silver Gelatin Print 30.5 x 40.6 cm

15 Artist Statement I have been visiting Port Moresby since 2005 when I was first invited there by a close friend. Since then I have returned to PNG numerous time and I now have many brothers and sisters there. The photographs I make in Port Moresby come from what I see and experience, really nothing more.

16 STEPHEN DUPONT KOISEN Kips Kaboni Gang Port Moresby. January 2004

17 Artist statement Papua New Guinea. A land of eight hundred tribes and languages. A land where security is the countrys biggest growth industry. A land that has long been represented as a risky place to holiday and do business. Port Moresby is annually ranked in the top five worst places to live in by the Economists survey of 130 of the worlds capital cities, yet people continue to build and live their lives in this community of extremes. The city is made up of settlements, which are large sprawling urban shantytowns where most of the people of Port Moresby live. I infiltrated a raskol (Tok Pisin for criminal) group in an attempt to document the individuals behind the facelessness of gang warfare. My Raskol series presents formal portraits of the Kips Kaboni or Scar Devils, Papua New Guineas oldest established gang that operate in the Kaugere settlement. By building trust over several visits, I was able to set-up a makeshift studio inside the gang's safe-house which to photograph my subjects - mostly young, unemployed adults and teenagers - who orchestrate raids, car- jackings and robberies as a means of survival. Raskols focuses on Papua New Guinean youth in crisis - men that have turned to crime, violence and anarchy in a bid to protect the future of themselves and their communities. My project aims to capture the changing face and the powerful impact of globalization on the fabric of this traditional Melanesian society. From the recasting of tribal society into an urban proletariat and the effects of violence and lawlessness in Port Moresby, I am witnessing the cultural erosion of an ancient people. I want to exploit photography's power to move, motivate, and to make change. With simple and honest representations of the raskols, their culture and identity, I offer a window into a unique yet fractured community, which may also be seen as a warning for other, seemingly more 'secure' cultures.

18 Profile of Australian photographer Stephen Dupont, who has travelled many times to war-torn Afghanistan to document life.

19 DAVID HEMPENSTALL Fishing from cargo ship. Central Bougainville 2010 silver gelatin 9x22cm

20 Artist Statement David Hempenstall (b.1979) finished photographing the exhumation of mass graves in Iraq in early 2007 and a few months later began making pictures in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville. His work to date is made within the post-conflict/pre-referendum period in Bougainvilles recent history. He is the third generation of his family to live and work in Bougainville (all under dramatically different circumstances). His work quietly references the geographic sites of shared experience and their importance while more immediately exploring the photographers own wanderings and growing personal relationships through the region. As the Autonomous Region of Bougainville rises from the ashes of a lengthy and crippling civil conflict the sustained influence of lengthy colonial exploitation, historical conflict and ongoing ethnic and domestic tensions are never far from sight or consideration. And yet to solely frame Bougainville through the label of a post- conflict state is to ignore its complex and exciting present and future; the strength and continuing use of language, custom and traditions, the resilience of the population and the possibilities and opportunities of independence and the creation of a significant new nation within the South Pacific. A Boogieville Swing is a small selection of prints from the larger body of work that David is currently engaged with. In an awkward way this particular edit of pictures is shaped and governed by the photographic device employed. At times Hempenstall uses a small rotational panoramic camera that swings its lens across a very wide field of view. It demands a certain degree of acceptance as the photographer steps back from control and allows the near-agricultural mechanical process underway to reach completion. Hempenstall began using it after a few years spent working in Bougainville in response to the often tight confines of the jungle and town settings and his impulse to be standing surrounded by the people and things he wanted to photograph. He has reached out and plucked a number of these swing pictures from within the piles of negatives and brought them together. Briefly.

21 Gary Lee Tanu, 33, 2011 adonis pacifica series 2012 Hahnemuhle paper 45 x 33.75cm

22 Artist Statement adonis pacifica is a series of 17 portraits of Pacific Islander men, taken in a range of locations (namely Rarotonga, Cook Islands, Auckland, Cairns and Melbourne) in 2010/11. The series continues my interest in male portraiture which intersects notions of beauty, masculinity, ethnicity and, not least, individuality, and relates to my ongoing series (since 1993) Nice Coloured Boys. As an Aboriginal (Larrakia) photographer, I feel a strong affinity with Pacific Islander people. adonis pacifica represents a largely street photographic practice, aiming to celebrate Pacific Islander beauty and presence. adonis pacifica also pays homage to real-life, everyday encounter and the direct individual gaze in an age of increasingly virtual connectivity.

23 Indigenous Australian photographer, Gary Lee's first international solo exhibition presented by Fresh Gallery Otara as a core event in the 2011 South Auckland Pacific Arts Summit. Fresh Gallery Otara is a community gallery and arts facility of Auckland Council, situated in the Otara Town Centre, South Auckland, Aotearoa New Zealand. GORGEOUSNESS (13 May - 25 June 2011)

24 Jon Lewis Lahane, Dili 2000-2001 Silver Gelatin Photograph, 80 x 100 cm Retratu Timor Lorasae Photographs from East Timor 2000 – 2001

25 Artist Statement RETRATU TIMOR LOROSAE PHOTOGRAPHS FROM EAST TIMOR 2000-2001 - Photographs for me are always the unexpected. This is a great joy. After years of making photographs, the technical aspects are pretty much under control. Its the process of making photographs that I seem to have little control over. I just work hard, never do I allow myself to think I have done something good. Im too involved with what is happening, and in the case of people, too involved with the people. What is important to me is how I relate, and I am very aware of how Im accepted in any give situation. There must be respect for the people one photographs, and courtesy. I had made photographs of East Timorese in Darwin in the late 80s and early 90s. I never thought the East Timorese would gain independence from the occupying Indonesian military. I was very aware of the situation there, had attended (and photographed) rallies and was well read. When the East Timorese voted for independence in 1999, I, like so many people, was overwhelmed with the emotions of those violent times. For me the East Timorese showed a courage like no other people. They knew a vote for freedom was to risk their very lives. It was an extraordinary act of bravery on a national level. I arrived in East Timor at the end of 1999, and travelled the length and breadth of that ½ island as best as the times allowed. It was intriguing how the East Timorese responded to my photographing. For 24 years they had been treated with utter contempt by the only foreigners they knew, the Indonesian military. Now there was someone interested in them as people, who like us all, have our dreams, and search for happiness and contentment. Photographing the East Timorese at that particular time was akin to acknowledging them after all those years. Acknowledging them as human, with all their human sorrows, frailties, and beauty. Australia as a nation grew up a bit that year and (finally) fulfilled the promise of the 2 nd World War veterans, that the East Timorese would not be forgotten. For me the East Timorese story is a very Australian story. Its our future, to the north, and the countries and peoples of our region. It hints at the maturity of the nation that Australia could be. Finally it was an immense privileged to document these first few years of an emerging nation. To share the stories and experiences of a remarkable people. I learnt much from other foreigners and the East Timorese alike. I shared hard and good times throughout. It has taken me two years. What you see in this small selection is the result. Viva Timor Lorosae! FOR THE EAST TIMORESE, PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE

26 Questions Photographs show only what is in the frame. Select a work from the exhibition and describe what you think is happening outside the frame. Look at the images in the education kit or exhibition, do you think the artist took the photograph spontaneously or do you think it was staged? Why? All photographers, excluding Gary Lee, have produced black and white photographs, why do you think the photographers chose to represent their subjects this way? Compare and contrast the work of Gary Lee with Sean Davey, what are the similarities and differences? Select a work from the exhibition, explain how it makes you feel. Look at each of the focus works, do you think the people in the photographs knew that they were being photographed? Explain. Look at Stephen Duponts work, how important do you think tone is in this work? What feelings do tone evoke? Select a focus work, analyse it in terms of the elements and principles of art. Photography is a constantly evolving medium, research a year from the timeline above what important innovations occurred during this time? Look at Ben Bohanes work, explain this work in terms of the cultural frame.

27 PNG Masks Postcards From The Rim also incorporates a selection of masks from a private collection. The masks are from the Papua New Guinea region. Masks hold various meanings, some are tree spirits, represent myth or ancestors, sometimes ghosts. Masks are worn during ceremonies, for significant times of the year or funerary customs. Masks are made from a range of materials including feathers, shells, horns, grasses, wood, clay and coral. The Papuan peoples probably came to PNG over 50,000 years ago after crossing the Wallace line over water and are known to have sailed as far as the Solomons 30,000 years ago (they were the earliest sailors) and they are one of the first people in the world to discover agriculture. They are known to have been the first to cultivate bananas, sugar cane and the first root vegetable, taro. They are suspected to have been the first to develop many other tropical plants. Wallace line Australian Museum – Masks from Melanesia

28 Mask Activity Primary School -Research masks from Papua New Guinea. Choose a favourite mask and create a drawing of the mask, highlighting the various materials that have been used. - Create a mask from natural materials, what meanings would your mask have? High School -Describe how masks have influenced artists such as Pablo Picasso. What references to masks are found in his work Les Demoiselles d'Avignon. - Select a mask from the hyperlink on the previous page, create an artwork that refers to the mask -. This mask was made by Iatmul speakers of the Sepik. Iatmul is one of over 800 languages spoken in PNG and one of the most ancient Papuan languages.

29 Glossary Box Brownie – the name of a long- running and popular series of simple and inexpensive cameras made by Eastman Kodak. Box Brownie Camera Obscura - a darkened box with a convex lens or aperture for projecting the image of an external object onto a screen inside, a forerunner to the modern camera. Camera Obscura Composition – the nature of something's ingredients, the way in which a whole or mixture is made up. Composition Contemporary – belonging to or occurring in the present. Contemporary Cinematography- the art of photography and camera work in in film-making Cinematography Daguerreotype – a photograph taken by early photographic process employing an iodine-sensitised slivered plate and mercury vapour. Daguerreotype Fixer – a chemical used to make an image stable to light Fixer Heliograph- a type of early photographic engraving made using a sensitised silver plate and a asphalt or bitumen varnish Heliograp Kastom – a Pijin word used to refer to traditional culture, including religion, economics, art and magic in Melanesia Kastom Proliferation - rapid increase in the amount or number of something. Proliferation Songlines - also called Dreaming tracks by Indigenous Australians within the animist indigenous belief system, are paths across the land, which mark the route followed by localised 'creator-beings' during the Dreaming. The paths of the songlines are recorded in traditional songs, stories, dance, and painting. Songlines Wallace Line - (or Wallace's Line) is an imaginary line drawn in 1859 separating the ecozones of Asia and Wallacea, a transitional zone between Asia and Australia. West of the line are found organisms related to Asiatic species; to the east, a mixture of species of Asian and Australian origin is present. Wallace Line

30 References / Websites 1. Documentary Photography, online at 2. Photojournalism, online at 3. ibid 4. Black and White Photography, online at You Tube: _________________________________________________________________________________________ Websites Ben Bohane - Stephen Dupont - Sean Davey - David Hempenstall - Gary Lee - Jon Lewis -

31 Goulburn Regional Art Gallery is supported by the NSW Government through Arts NSW


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