Current research project:
‘The Fever Ships’ is a creative research project that explores multiple sites with a relationship to Quarantine and migration in Australia. The new artworks developed will be a contemporary approach to this historic material and will associate thematically with borders, protective barriers, palimpsests of the past and marks within the landscape, internment and forcible detention. These themes point to a much broader context of Australia’s medical, migration and maritime legacy, and the global movement of people. The project will link into current political concerns, as well the layers of past experience that inform these. The research project will link into the archaeological investigation of more than 1000 inscriptions dating from the 1830s to 1970s, with the help of the Sydney University Research Associates currently conducting a project at the Manly, NSW Quarantine Station.( see the following article for more information on the site and works of this group
The artworks which are planned, relate not only to these inscriptions but also to other sites and material related to their isolated geography and conceptual potential. Each site is in variable condition and has a different range of visitation. Through the use of archival materials, objects and images, I aim to find ways to reinvest the layered palimpsest of the sites historical forms with renewed social value whilst mapping out their previous ideological referents. This work will avoid historical re enactment or referencing the heritage of the sites in a documentary form. It is the material and subtle forms that will be drawn from the site and the conceptual embodiment of the site which is brought forward into the final forms of the artistic work.