Articulations of the unknown
The sky is heavy with rain clouds, the roads are flooded, and we have the wussiest car in the Parachilna parking lot. One map tells us the trip will take us 8 hours, another says 3. The ranger at Rawnsley Park Station reports that the road to the east is open. The lady at the Blinman shop says the road marked “open” is unpassable. The man at the Copley caravan park smirks and tells us the road marked “4WD only” will be passable if we are not silly. We hesitate, face our fears and travel on. Our plan for extended night sky research is continually thwarted by the weather. The satellite dish that provides internet access has blown down and they need to send a helicopter to repair it. We are well out of mobile phone range. But we take our time. We take in our surroundings. We adjust.
Our week was one of slow walks and conversations. We ask ourselves how we can make sense of our experiences and how the idea of the unknown influences our perception. We consider how maps serve as both truths and fictions, and how we can approach translating our observations. As we proceed we bear in mind the histories of translating personal experiences of place into something transferable to others.
Articulations of the unknown was an exhibition of photographs, drawings, prints, and video that documented the process of traveling to, and finding ways to connect with, a remote and unfamiliar environment. The exhibition presented the results of a multi-phase collaborative investigation with Jessica Brooke Anderson that began with a research field trip to Arkaroola Wilderness Reserve in the northern Flinders Ranges SA and continued as Artists in Residence at the Megalo Printmaking Studios in Canberra.