Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Back from Australia

It was so wonderful to be in Australia for five weeks! My sister and I traveled many miles (her Isuzu pulling a pop-up trailer), from Perth up the Northwest Coastal Highway to Karratha, then to Karijini National Park, and back down the Great Northern Highway. In between we had tire blowouts, a bush fire, and 100+ degree heat. We both saw the amazing similarity of the landscape to that of New Mexico, where we grew up, except that, in many cases, the Indian Ocean was just over a hill -- and the plants were spinifex and acacia rather than sagebrush and piƱon.

One of the things I love about Australia is that people save stuff in case they need to use it later, so there are "tips" and storage areas everywhere. At Yardie Homestead Caravan Park at the top of the Ningaloo reef near Exmouth, they had three dump areas. I would love to get a grant to go back and make much more out of the goodies there.

We were only there two days (and we had to spend some time kayaking up Yardie Creek and watching green turtles mate), but I made several things. I loved all the old bedframes, and think it would be cool to do a whole series of figures reclining on them. This was a quick sketch of the idea from bits that I found nearby. 

And another sketch of a standing figure:

Both of the above pieces were left where they were constructed, but I made one more substantial piece that I left with the owners. Here it is with my sister, Gail Simms (for scale):

When we got back to my sister's place after our 19-day trip, I made an angel for her out of materials we had collected on our trip:

I also did a large installation that I will write about in a subsequent post.


Unknown said...

I love love love love both of these - as an ex lifeguard and also as a lover of the delicate angel you made!

Maggie Neale said...

Such fun to see these works left on Australian soil; lovely angel for your sister and glad to see her too.