Grounded, a commission by Glasgow Life for Festival 2014 Commonwealth Games, is the seventh exhibition in my Place Matters series. Grounded presents the outcome of two residencies; one in the Gaelic speaking Outer Hebrides of Scotland and the other with the Australian Aboriginal nations of the Central Australian desert and the plains of Western Queensland.
Grounded features photography, sound, audiovisual, language and prose; with inspiration drawn from landscape and stories shared by the local people. My artistic interpretation addresses issues surrounding connection to land, language, and each other for environmental and personal wellbeing.
The exhibition leads us on a journey from windswept, flower-filled Machair and surging seas to gently rolling sand hills mapped by Songlines and The Dreaming. On both sides of the world, loss of land and suppression of language caused a breakdown of cultural identity still evident today. Pride in cultural heritage and a deep connection to the land and spirituality, surface as the force behind the resilience and strength that have kept the cultures alive.
The exhibition also details my overnight imprisonment in Alice Springs. The case was dismissed in court and the story surrounding my arrest and the lack of any conviction vividly demonstrates, through first hand experience, one of the many struggles still facing Australian Aboriginal people today.
Grounded was also shown at An Lanntair Gallery in the Outer Hebrides, The Judith Wright Centre for Contemporary Arts, Brisbane, and was toured by Flying Arts Alliance Queensland until 2018