Location: Cato Gallery
Opening and Book Launch: Sunday 12 February, 1pm–3pm. Meet the Artist Sunday 19 February, 1pm–3pm.
In 2019, Johanna and Erica co-facilitated a six-month story camp in Darwin for writers and artists after which they decided to use the creative processes they’d developed for the attendees on themselves. Their mutual love of birds led them towards Hope is the Thing. Erica created collage images to accompany Johanna’s poem, which riffs on Emily Dickinson’s famous poem ‘Hope is the Thing With Feathers’. Their collaboration asks the question, if hope is the thing with feathers, what does that look like in our Australia, today?
Erica’s collage material comes from old work, piles of life drawings, landscape sketches, still life compositions – abandoned or discarded – as well as plain painted backgrounds, monoprints, and fragments of text from books and journals. She paints the backgrounds loosely, using colours that evoke places she loves: the wide-open skies of central and northern Australia, misty mountain forests, wild burnt coastlines, tender sunrises, dramatic storms and sunsets. Onto these colour fields, she places torn and cut shapes, looking for angles and contrasts of light and dark, thick and thin, rough and smooth, curves and straight lines. She draws birds in action and traces their shapes onto the back of the old artworks, so it’s a surprise when she turns the cut shapes over.
Erica says: ‘Making pictures from my own discarded art supports my belief that nature rights itself, even as it destroys. It is possible to repurpose, reuse, and make something new.’
Erica will be in the gallery throughout the exhibition and the book, Hope is the Thing, will be officially launched on Sunday 12 February, 1-3pm.
We would like to pay our respects to the traditional owners of the land on which our building stands, their leaders, past, present and emerging.