A Trip To Oz Film and Props, 2014

Adopting a storybook aesthetic, pristine vistas and idyllic locations are reimagined with reference to personal, political and historical issues in an attempt to hint at a level of contrivance and obfuscation. Absurd wonderlands of pastel colour and humorous subjects sit in uneasy tension with an historical record of violence and subjugation. These images are drawn into a single narrative in a filmic homage to Georges Méliès masterpiece ‘Le Voyage dans la lune’. Deploying the techniques of scenic painting and the language of pantomime, this lunar adventure is parodied, with ‘The Wonderful Land of Oz’ as the backdrop.

The film presents a fantastical account of Jean Emile Serisier's arrival in Australia that critiques a particular European mythology of discovery and pioneering. Thinking self-reflectively about patriarchy and perspective, what emerges is a tentative awareness of my complex subjectivity – at once the unwitting heir of settler colonialism and the butt of a patriarchal heritage that dominates the feminine and nature alike. The storybook medium I deploy is full of oblique references and vague implications that parallel my own naïve encounter with the environment and suggest how the silences of national mythology can also be avenues towards an understanding of the broader historical and environmental context.

A Trip To Oz is part of The Wonderful Land of Oz series. A large body of work that includes drawingsphotographsa filman installation and a public artwork, which articulate a critical reading of the Australian landscape. The film features an original score by Norwegian jazz pianist Jan Fadness. This work was premiered at Spiro Grace Art Rooms (SGAR) alongside a catalogue essay by Courtney Pedersen.

Special thanks to: MAAP Projects, Spiro Grace Art Rooms, Bertrand Branchu, Scott Morrison, Michaela Gleave, Cathy De Silva, Reuben Degroot, Mark Hurley, Simon Degroot, David Serisier, Suzanne Serisier, Dominique Serisier, Father George, Tarragindi Theatre Society, Lisa Bryan-Brown, Martin Barry, Paul Spiro and Renai Grace.