Fly like a Bird

2021 / Birds drawn with charcoal from Australian bushfires

Drawing is at the core of my arts practice, and I often use unconventional tools and approaches to investigate contemporary drawing practice.

Artist Statement

Several weeks after the 2019/2020 Black Summer megafires swept throughout Australia I visited Browns Swamp, outside Lithgow. The wetland was surrounded by severely burnt landscape that stretched as far as you could see.

Witnessing this extensive damage in ominous silence raised deep questions about the survival of the wildlife.

To document their plight, I have drawn with burnt wood from the black summer fires a series of native Australian birds, depicting their escape.

My art is a testimony to their endurance but also a declaration that we must protect and preserve their diminishing environments.

Several drawings in this series have been darned and stitched to echo my attraction to the makeshift and the need to repair and preserve.

Out of the ashes we find beauty and life - a regeneration of the land and our psyche.

- Ralph Hobbs & Nicole Hauser May 2021


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