Working with the Dead – Gabrielle Bates

In "Working with the Dead", Gabrielle Bates explored her settler ancestry to highlight the complex problem of place occupation and ownership in Australia today. The installation is the result of a series of ritual walks in which Gabrielle visited locations occupied by her forebears, including lands formerly inhabited by the Gadigal, Cammeraigal, Burramatta, Dharawhal and Mouheneener people in Sydney, country NSW and Tasmania.

From each walk, Gabrielle borrowed a stone, then cast its form using torn pieces of real estate advertising paper and flour glue. The stone was then returned to its place of origin. Simple faces were carved into the paper casts which were finally placed on sticks, each one representing an ancestor. this simple performative process created a gateway for the artist to connect with her ancestors to reflect, accept responsibility, and apologise for the state of occupation and colonisation that persists in contemporary Australia.

At AIRspace Projects 10 Junction Street Marrickville, NSW

The show is on until 25th August

Artist Talks on Saturday 24th August 3-5pm



Share this Post

Comments 2

  1. Thanks for this lovely profile of my installation, ‘Working with the Dead’, Lorrie. It was so great to chat with you and I hope we can do it again some time. The work will be installed in another group show, INSITU at Chrissie Cotter Gallery, Pidcock St Camerpdown, from Wednesday 4 December to Sunday 15 December. You are most welcome to join me for a drink on Thursday 5 December between 6-8pm. X

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *