Not much is recorded or extant regarding the Indigenous who lived in the area prior to white settlement, but for the stone axes we still randomly find in the paddocks. The ashes of the past – symbolised by burnt-down gunyahs – produced a township whose neglected aspects, the rear views of buildings, belie the efforts and hardships of the early settlers. But out of these ashes also rose the resilience that bred the strong spirits of two of Australia’s most accomplished artists, Kev Carmody and Archie Moore*.
Stokes came to art later in life and here once more uses photography to reflect on her world. For some time now she has been concerned with sociological and cultural issues including the place of the indigenous in Australian history. The photographic collage ‘Deep History’ sets that theme into local context.
* With kind permission of both artists I added these works to my own reflections: Kev Carmody’s album cover from ‘Cannot Buy My Soul, 2020 Edition’; and Archie Moore’s Madonna, the 2011 album cover for ‘Gold & Red’ by Nikko.