Welcome to the Burke & Wills Environment Expedition Visual Journal.
The artwork takes the form of a series of postcards from Ben Beeton highlighting and documenting the people, the land and changes in Australia's environment since the original expedition. These postcards seek to intrigue and encourage students to reflect and examine the history of Australia through deep time.
Journal images are presented in 3 sections:
Section 1: Melbourne to Menindee
Section 2: Menindee to Coopers Creek
Section 3: Coopers Creek to the Gulf of Carpentaria (still in progress, to be completed in 2011)
Some images include links to videos on Youtube Videos
Interactive multi-media artist
27 August 2010
Firstly, running along the base of this image is a drawing of an Acacia. On the 27th we had been joined by two scientist Doug Small and Alfred Heuperman who I spent a lot of time with. I traveled with them on the way to our next base camp at Kerang. On the way we passed over the Campaspe River it was here that I did a series of films with the scientists about the environmental problems and positive aspects that were taking place in the landscape. These films will be available as links from the artwork in the up and coming website about our journey. Through my experience with these scientists I explored color coding. Images that are touching red are negative impacts on the environment such as weeds and housing estates. Images that are touching green mean that they are native plants. Images that are touch blue are positive land management projects. Images that are encapsulated in yellow are locations. As I continued to travel with the scientists I began to see things more through their eyes and was shocked to realize that weeds were absolutely everywhere. The changes in the environment since Burke and Wills are truly staggering. Salinity was also extremely common. If I had not been with the scientists I might have thought these which were in fact saline were just fellow fields. There are two maps in the top right corner. The first illustrates the evolution of the Murray River near Eachuca from over 30,000 years ago to the present. The second image is a false color satellite of the central section of the Riverine Plains that Burke and Wills travelled across. In this image River Red Gums are seen as brown areas. Paddocks of irrigated crops appear as red squares. This map illustrates the amazing changes that have taken place since the original Burke and Wills expedition. Both of these maps are described by Alfred Heuperman in short films. I have several native plant drawings in this image. One is of some gum leaves the other two are of a plant that the scientists called Lignun. There are four landscape photos in a row that illustrate some of the landscapes that we traveled through on our way to Kerang.
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