A tracery of trauma in powerful solo exhibition

Peter Clancy Hero Image, title Undercurrent 1 from the series Undercurrent, 2018-2019, Inkjet pigment print. Photo provided by the artist.

‘Undercurrent’, a solo exhibition by artist Peta Clancy, will be showcased at the Koorie Trust in March. It presents educated and artistic responses to sites on Dja Dja Wurrung country in Victoria where massacres and frontier violence occurred.

Clancy, a Bangerang woman from the Murray Goulburn area, spent six months consulting with the Dja Dja Wurrung community for permission to begin the project.

After receiving consent, Clancy began a 12-month residency at the Koorie Heritage Trust. The residency allowed her to collaborate with community and be on country whilst creating the artworks.

The artworks were created using cutting and layering techniques to represent the emotional and cultural scars covered by historical and physical colonial occupation.

Clancy also collected interviews with Dja Dja Wurrung elders that will accompany the exhibition as soundscape.

When visiting sites, the artist attempted to reconcile knowing the trauma of the country.

“By creating the scarred images, I aim to suggest the trauma of the past and to give this a presence in the landscape. The images are cut, yet rendered whole again, but the cut remains in the image as a visual trace of the traumatic history and events that occurred within that landscape,” she said.

The artworks were developed over a series of months in which she would revisit massacre sites or areas of significant frontier violence at various times in various weather conditions.

She also would visit sites with large scale photographic prints and works on the artworks in the locations they were based upon.

Clancy was the 2018 Fostering Koorie Art and Culture Koorie Heritage Trust Residency recipient which was funded by the Australian Government’s Indigenous Languages and Arts Program. She has been exhibited in both domestic and international galleries.

Clancy completed her practice-based PhD at Monash University in Melbourne where she is currently a senior lecturer of art, design and architecture.

‘Undercurrent’ is the first exhibition from the Koorie Heritage Trust’s residency program designed to encourage cultural engagement through the arts. The exhibition has been generously supported by Gandel Philathropy.

‘Undercut’ is open to the public on the 9th of March at the Koorie Heritage, Yarra Building, Federation Square Melbourne and will close on the 28th of April 2019.

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