Past Residencies

Regina Walter- ALL STOCK MUST GO
Raquel Ormella- It's a big experiment basically

Habitats #3 & #4
22 September - 21 October 2007

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Part three and four in IASKA’s Habitats project presents the work of Raquel Ormella and Regina Walter. Habitats is an exhibition based on a collaboration between research scientists from CSIRO Sustainable Ecosystems and contemporary artists participating in the IASKA artists in residence program. Scientists and artists work with local communities, land care groups and rural students to research the interaction between natural and human living environments in the Wallatin/O’Brian catchment area (Western Australian Wheatbelt).

Habitats focuses on transitional zones where natural and human living environments overlap, clash and intermingle. Works will examine different modes of cohabitation - sometimes conflicting sometimes complementary - between people, plants and animals sharing contested territories.

  Western Sydney based artist Regina Walter has a created a site specific installation ‘ALL STOCK MUST GO’ utilizing the gallery’s shop front architecture. Walter has created faux shops that humorously highlight environmental problems and social issues of the region.

Bloomin’ Wild flowers and plants’ takes the local weeds out of context, recalling their beauty and reason for some of their introduction as ornamentals. They are presented as florists’ merchandise, planted in recycled tyre planters made locally.  The display includes wreaths and topiary made from classified weeds. Walter plays with the recycled theme, creating bush craft style shelving from chemical containers, and other objects from salvaged items.

Exotic furs’ was inspired by the collection of foxes and feral cats shot and strung up on a fence in North Kellerberrin. Walter has dressed mannequins in various furs collected second hand or borrowed, their ‘clearance’ labels offering factual information about the impact of these pests to the environment.

Wheatbelt Reality’ is a real estate window displaying dilapidated houses photographed in the district. This work confronts the local housing shortage while referring to the social cost of the reducing population. As farmers buy neighbouring properties and expand to remain profitable, the acquired homes fall into disrepair due to disuse.

Canberra based artist Raquel Ormella’s work in progress called It’s a big experiment basically responds to her second trip to the wheat belt to observe the interaction between scientists, farmers and artists. Ormella has personally interviewed both farmers and local environmental workers, focusing upon their reactions to the Catchment Development Initiative’s Deep Drainage project to reduce the impact of salinity in the farming landscape. Through drawing and illustration, she has combined elements of broad acre farming and the local flora and fauna to acknowledge the complexities of group dynamics and engineering experiments upon the environment.

Ormella and Walter have an on going zine collaboration called Flaps. During their residency they have made a zine about one of the ISAKA attendants and Kellerberrin local Joy Wickland.