An artist exploring layers of nuance, complexity and hidden elements to present rural, regional and remote landscapes and communities in ways that make the familiar, unfamiliar.
I’m an Australian-based artist who uses a range of digital media and writing to explore layers of nuance and complexity within the rural and regional territories in which I work. I seek the hidden elements that make them vibrate. Through research, observation, field recordings, collaborations and creativity, my want is to present rural, regional and remote landscapes and communities in ways that make the familiar, unfamiliar. I use verbal and non-verbal storytelling to tease out narratives of connection and give voice to the voiceless. Sometimes we even find common ground. My individual and collaborative works are presented across Australia and internationally in festivals, exhibitions, public events, and online platforms in various formats including soundscapes, videos, photography, installations and writings.
My art practice has been grounded in my life on the land, growing up on a large working farm, where I roamed the plains of northwest NSW on foot and horseback. After studying agriculture and journalism, I became a specialist rural reporter with ABC Radio before becoming a farmer myself. Starting a new farming business during the Millennium drought of the early to mid-2000s was what prompted me to find other ways of communicating my despair, frustration and concern about what was happening — I’d also become a mother during this time. On leaving ABC Radio, I established a communications agency, where I worked with rural and regional innovators of the Australian Landcare, conservation, and regenerative farming movements. I also observed enormous resistance to these ideas in mainstream rural communities.
I’ve embraced digital technologies over the past 15 years of my art practice as a way of providing mobile and accessible ways of gathering and sharing stories — sometimes shining a light on the issue, at other times, the community or landscape. Australia is at the coal face of climate change with the intensity and frequency of droughts, floods and fires impacting most heavily on those regional communities charged with producing food and fibre for Australia and the world. We face existential challenges. As an artist, I feel charged with not only documenting the issues impacting our collective future through creative enquiry but finding a way to change the way we think, feel and act within the world we inhabit. We must be part of the solution.
Kim’s ClimateCultures posts