The seamstress (a)mending World War I history

Batorowicz, Beata (2018) The seamstress (a)mending World War I history. In: Landscape and memory: Frank Hurley and a nation imagined[Contemporary art exhibition catalogue]. Ellipsis Media, Toowoomba, QLD, Australia, pp. 22-25. ISBN 978-0-9925160-8-6


In early August 2018 the Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery (TRAG) in Queensland opened a group exhibition titled Landscape and Memory: Frank Hurley and a nation imagined. Eight artists working or studying in the university sector responded in various media to Frank Hurley’s iconic images taken on the Western Front and in the Middle East in 1917 and 1918. Though the exhibition took its place amidst a plethora of First World War centenary commemorative activities, in fact from its very inception the exhibition sought to explore the place of landscape in the Australian cultural imagination. The war, as Samuel Hynes posited, was the major political and military event of the age, but it was also the 'great imaginative event', one which 'altered the ways in which men and women thought not only about war but about the world, and about culture and its expressions'. To make sense of a conflict that by 1918 had left Australia a broken nation required an imagining of the war on the part of her soldiers and citizens that drew on familiar tropes, the most pervasive of which was the belief that the Australian people share a special relationship with the land. In this construct, battlefields became physical and imaginary spaces which were, like the Australian Outback, new lands to be claimed. Hurley’s photographs are an appropriate starting point for a reimagining of the battlefields of 1917 and 1918 and an exploration of this special relationship.

Statistics for USQ ePrint 36167
Statistics for this ePrint Item
Item Type: Book Chapter (Commonwealth Reporting Category B)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: c. 2018 Ellipsis Media.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Arts and Communication
Date Deposited: 13 May 2019 04:41
Last Modified: 04 Jul 2019 01:29
Uncontrolled Keywords: landscape, Frank Hurley, Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery (TRAG), Australian outback, First World War, centenary, Ypres, Western Front
Fields of Research : 19 Studies in Creative Arts and Writing > 1905 Visual Arts and Crafts > 190503 Lens-based Practice
19 Studies in Creative Arts and Writing > 1901 Art Theory and Criticism > 190102 Art History
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970119 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of the Creative Arts and Writing

Actions (login required)

View Item Archive Repository Staff Only