Peking 1975 is a series of large blue and orange monoprints on rice paper. The research for the work  was made during a residency with Gail Kenning at a Red Gate Art Residency in Beijing in 2011.

The starting point for the work was the shared experience with Gail of two very different journeys in Beijing. The locations were connected by their poignant political histories and contrasted by their location in the city. The first journey, on the outskirts of Beijing  involved us walking around Kunming Lake in the grounds of the Summer Palace ( Yuanming Yuan). It  was freezing, freezing cold with a forceful wind blowing from the north.

In contrast the second journey was in subway Line 2 in the centre of Beijing which runs in a rectangular loop around the city centre tracing the old Ming Dynasty inner city wall. The space was urban, functional, hot, crowded, colourful, vibrant, fast-moving, transient, timetabled, visceral. It promoted close human contact and fleeting connections.

On our return to Sydney we worked independently with ongoing dialogue to create discrete bodies of work. On all the sheets of rice paper I printed a ground texture in orange and blue from a length of coarsely woven linen bought from a market in Beijing.

To document the walk around the around frozen lake I printed willow leaves reminiscent of the deciduous willow trees planted around the edges of the lake; and lotus leaves that were submerged in ponds around the gardens of the palace.

For the  subway I cut strips of rubber from perforated inner soles and remade the shape of Line 2 subway repetitively creating an abstract pattern.

Gail and I exhibited our work from the residency with Peleton Gallery at Sydney College of the Arts in 2012. 

monoprints on ricepaper
Documents | PDFS
1. Catalogue