The Making of Wallflower – Mirror, rorriM

Wallflower – Mirror, rorriM was made specifically for Mildura Palimpsest #8 and was then re-installed for my exibition Wallflower – The Event at Australian Galleries, Smith Street, Melbourne.

This piece was very much influenced by the place where I was born and currently live – Mildura. On the banks of Murray River, Mildura is a food bowl region known for its grapes, oranges and being an oasis on the edge of the desert. The Chaffey family who settled in the area in 1887 and created the Mildura Irrigation Colony


The Murray River near Mildura






I grew up on a vineyard when it was mostly a dried fruit industry. Now it is mostly fresh fruit and wine grapes.








Rio Vista House - The original Chaffey family home








This tactile experience with the land, the Murray river combined with the history of Colonization to the area and my parents’ migration to Mildura were the inspiration behind this piece. The next process was getting one quarter of a cubic metre of dirt to cover the floor and finding an easy way to manage and carry the dirt. Buckets used for picking grapes were the best option. This was my return trip to Mildura Mini Mix to get the dirt for the Melbourne installation and everyone chipped in to help including my two fabulous friends Pam and Philip Shugg who drove the dirt to Melbourne!!


Getting the red loam and river sand for the installation








The dirt waiting to be turned into "art dirt" in Melbourne.








Almost there!! Pam Shugg and I installing the floor carpet of mildura dirt and river sand at Australian Galleries in Melbourne.









This was the blurb for Mildura Palimpsest #8. Two drawings based on segments of native Australian orchids, incorporating animal fur and presented on a repeated pattern of William Morris wallpaper design hang in a small cube like room in the basement of Rio Vista. On the floor is a carpet of Mildura dirt which has the William Morris design inlayed in Murray River Sand. Contained within the small cellar in the basement of Rio Vista (the original Chaffey home), the work draws on Mildura’s history of colonization, the introduction of irrigation and the subsequent migration of Italians to the area.

Installations views at Rio Vista House in Mildura and Australian Galleries, Melbourne

Wallflower - Mirror, rorriM, floor detail for Mildura Palimpsest #8


Wallflower - Mirror, rorriM Installation View at Australian Galleries in Melbourne.


Wallflower - Mirror, rorriM, Pastel on paper, 107h x 215w, 2011

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