Haefligers Cottage at Hill End
During the month of September Nicole Welch was the Haefligers Cottage Resident at Hill End in regional New South Wales. Throughout the residency, Welch created site-specific media installations, producing incredible photographic works from these live projections.
Welch’s oeuvre consists of stunning images of picturesque landscapes that have a loaded symbol implanted into each painstakingly-composed scene. She does not resort to using Photoshop and instead takes props, generators, spotlights and projectors to her chosen location, where she camps out, waiting for the perfect light, before capturing these alluring disruptions illuminated within captivating terrain.
Nicole Welch on site in Hill End
As Welch explains, “…‘Apparitions #6 – Projection ‘Le Kangaroo me charge, 1869′‘ captures a media installation composed during a Hill End Artist’s Residency in 2014. The projected image, punctuating the landscape of Wallaby Rocks, is an illustration extracted from the French book Australie : voyage autour de monde by De Beauvoir, published 1869. An early equivalent of a Lonely Planet guide for the 1860s, it represented a surge in interest in the ‘New World’ of Australia. A heroic image of conquest, ‘Le Kangaroo me charge’ projected onto the escarpment of Wallaby Rocks fixes time, encapsulating the past and present, both simultaneously active and representative of the layers of historical strata embedded in the landscape.
“This work is the first of a series of photographic and video works that reinterpret images borrowed from early European journals on Australia. In my practice I look to historical records of knowledge that reveal the ideologies embraced during the settlement of Australia. The era of the Enlightenment arrived with the dawn of science and these two forces, along with Christianity, had a central role to play in how the land, its people, fauna and flora were understood, presented and claimed. By throwing projections onto the terrain I illuminate representations of Australia from the past by bringing them into the present, creating a hybrid landscape that reveals the mechanisms that inform our present-day relationship to country.”
‘Apparitions #6 – Projection ‘Le Kangaroo me charge, 1869” will be on view in our charity exhibition Elephant in the Room, on view from 4 to 29 November. This show will raise funds for the Animal Welfare League, on view from 4 to 29 November.
Nicole Welch, ‘Apparitions #6 – Projection ‘Le Kangaroo me charge, 1869” 2014, pigment ink, face-mounted, 80 x 80cm, edition of 6. ['Le Kangaroo me charge' engraving from Australie : voyage autour de monde / par le Comte de Beauvoir 1869]