LUKE POWER COPYRIGHT 2017. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Collage

Installation Collaboration: Mirvac, Injalak Arts, Melissa Hamlyn

Created: 14 Sep 2018

This 2018 collaboration showcases printed fabric, image designs and hand woven textile grass pieces by Indigenous artists from  Injalak Arts, in Northern Territory's Arnhem Land. Working with Sydney textile artist, Melissa Hamlyn, I was able to make a sculptural space that draped the Injalak prints across the bodies of 4 mannequins which were back-lit by 6 giant LED glowing wood cut-out silhouettes. The hanging cut-outs are replicas of images found on the printed material and are localised indigenous baskets used for fishing and food gathering.

Each mannequin has their own style of drappery, the three females have a mixture between short and sassey, long and flowing, mixed with oversized wooden brooches, curls of bunched yarn, adorned with dried raw desert grass from Northern Territory and various desert flowers and bird feathers.

The installation presented a diverse vibrancy of Australian textiles and hand-made, hand -crafted arts. On display for over two months at Mirvac's Birkenhead Point, Sydney Harbour, this day-time night-time work was a window display like no other.

Thanks to Don Arnold Photography for the collection of images. Injalak Arts for the beautiful contribution and dialogue to make this work possible. Art Pharmacy for commissioning and coordinating the installation, and Melissa Hamlyn for the inspiring drapery.


Desert Collage

Created: 22 Jul 2017

There were 4 types of photos I took in my recent visit to Central Australia:

Luke Power - Desert Collage
Burnt out / crashed cars on the side of the road
Luke Power - Desert Collage
Objects found in landscape – scrap metal, tyres, wheels, car parts - no reference to sky
Luke Power - Desert Collage
Close-up rust shots of metal (found in a car yard dump) with no reference to land or sky
Luke Power - Desert Collage
Abstractions of rusty objects / cars with only blue sky background, no reference to land.

I took quite a few hundred photos and compiled them into this collage, a very hands-on editing process.

Luke Power - Desert Collage

In my 8-hour drive from Yulara to Pipalyantjara I saw possibly hundreds of cars by the side of the road. I wanted to document with photography a selection of the burnt-out rusty in APY Lands. They are abandoned either from breaking down, or a crash – spinning off the dirt treks, hitting a ditch, swerving to miss a roo or dingo. Many are burnt out and crumpled up. This aspect of the outback is a disruption to the pristine imagery we only ever see in tourism advertising.

Luke Power - Desert Collage

The top line of images are some of these cars I documented, January 2017. This layout is referencing Bonita Ely’s latest work for Documenta14 Athens, a collection of photographs showing prestine environments and waste / dumps in waterways and other places.

Luke Power - Desert Collage

In March I returned to APY Lands and stayed in Kalka, just 5 minutes from Pipalyantjara. I was a camera man filming the youth celebrating their lives with a fashion show; clothes provided by my partner’s not-for-profit organisation ‘Thread Together’

Luke Power - Desert Collage

Next to our Pipalyantjara accommodation was a car wreck dumping area. I wondered around and took photos. A sign warned “Be careful of buried asbestos”, a fairly serious concern, especially because this site was about 100 meters from the nearest house with children.

I was interested in framing object found on the ground, single shapes, for example circular objects. I lay many of these in a grid formation on the “ground” of my collage.

Luke Power - Desert Collage

I also become interested in photographing rusty object surfaces with no reference to sky or land – full shots of rust. Many of these I complied into a large mass of rust, right end of the collage.

Luke Power - Desert Collage
Luke Power - Desert Collage

Following on from the rust pile was a line of rusty objects I joined to form a new continuous horizon. It was to mimic the mountains, but with rust.

The left half of the image moved from found objects in the sand to full rust textured surfaces, abstract surface readings. I didn’t have enough images to continue with this development, so it then became lines of junk extending from the landscape into arms moving into sky. The sky being framed with black lines, like an abstract cage.

I printed a few copies of some of my material and while working out how to make an image of a flurry of wire sit next to each other, I realised by placing it end to end, it gave the appearance of a self-contained, floating object. I loved this effect.

Luke Power - Desert Collage

I then experimented with sections of cars I had taken photos of with surrounding blue sky.

Luke Power - Desert Collage
Luke Power - Desert Collage

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