Milang Residency- "The Long Lunch"


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Celebrating extensive revegetation work along Lake Alexandrina by volunteers, the event included a residency to create a sculpture trail.

  • An evocative trail, or series, of 3 environmental sculpture installations to last for one year, made in collaboration with Mike Tye.

  • Created at three closely linked, highly visible and well frequented sites between the lakeside information bay and foreshore near the jetty.

  • Natural materials indigenous to the Milang lake area, such as privately sourced paperbark prunings, or aged recycled materials such as weathered fencing wire from the Milang Environment Centre.

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SITE 1

Tucked into the reedy beach corner of the 2nd sandbag bank to left of jetty.

“Wet” – three, person-sized anthropomorphic and sinuous fishlike forms resting together on the sand and made of fine paper bark branches wired together. The water washed through them and storms finally buried them at water’s edge- one was carried out on tides into the reeds and dissolved there (each form 2m L X 700mmm W). We are over 70% water so it is not surprising that we resonate so strongly with the fate of a large body of water like the lake.

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SITE 2

In the Casuarina planting which edges the main foreshore lawns.

“Flow” - suspended veils of delicately layered netting referring to fish compounds/ the barrages, with a 3 X 1.5m floor of water flow patterning (a mud impressed ephemeral mosaic of bird tracks, white stone, empty seed pods, shell grit etc. A visitor enters the “room” with the underwater feel of being a fish in a net.

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SITE 3

The bridge which spans the samphire gully Snipe bird fenced conservation area.

“Returning” - 7 X 1.8m high tripods standing on either side of the bridge- birdlike/ nestlike- with aerial floating layers of lightweight woven wire suggesting high water levels, suspended from under the bridge. Each year the Snipe return and will do so as long as there is water in the lake to support their habitat and food source.

At each site consideration was given to wind and wave activity, and the sensitivity of conservation values.

  • We researched for this project through meetings, on-site or close by, with representatives of local environment and conservation management groups, MOSH, NRM, Ngarrindjerri Elders, the Milang primary school; Terry Sims, local historian; local landholders..

  • The concept encapsulated core elements of Lake Alexandrina as a sustainable environment both in body and community cultural spirit. The images are dreamlike and multi levelled, linked to the text and myth based performance work being created for the lunch marquee and tables.