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
25 August 2010
Firstly, running along the base of this image on the left is a depiction of the stormy weather that both expeditions faced; on the right is a volcano that is now extinct and which was the theme of one of Ludwig Becker’s drawings. As the Burke and Wills expedition headed north they travelled across what is now the Melbourne Airport, at Tullamarine. In 1860 when Burke and Wills past this way, planes had not been invented. On our expedition we are speaking to people in the regions that we pass through about the environmental problems that the region is facing. One of the problems in the Tullamarine region is an introduced species of grass called Serrated Tussock Grass which is destroying a lot of the essential natural vegetation. Photographs of Serrated Tussock Grass at the Tullamarine Airport are featured in the bottom middle section of the image. Here we can also see Jonathan King (documentary coordinator and presenter) and Michael Dillon (camera man and director) making the documentary about the expedition. Above this is a map of the geology of the Tullamarine region. A considerable amount of the rocks are Devonian in age which means that they are approximately 408 to 360 million years old. In response to the age of these rocks that both Burke and Wills as well as our expedition travelled across I have placed a map of Australia’s position on the globe at approximately 360 million years ago. This is long before Dinosaurs or Mammals existed. To the left of this image is a black and white image depicting the dark stormy weather of the day which was the same weather that Burke and Will’s faced when they traveled through this region 150 years ago. The drawing of the arching tree on the left is another image of the ancient flowering plant Antarctic Beach whose scientific name in Nothofagus which grew in the region millions of years ago.