Blast from the past

self-portrait-manifesto-med

Belinda Allen, Manifesto/Self-portrait, 1981, hand-coloured silver-gelatin print, 50 x 60 cm.

The internet is amazing! While holidaying on lovely Magnetic Island in July I received an email from Sally Northfield, an organiser for the AS IF Festival, celebrating the Women’s Art Register based in Melbourne. She had dug up on old (I mean oooold!) picture of mine and wanted to use it on the website. How amazing that she was able to find my image, find my email address and contact me while I was holidaying 2000 kilometres away! The festival is on now with events until November 7 – here’s the website, and here’s my pic, promoting the Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thon on October 31 🙂

Portrait of my sister Kate

Dear departed – My sister kate

Since my sister Kate died last year, I have been intermittently delving into images of her to develop a series of portraits. It’s slow going, more therapy than creativity perhaps. The first portrait I was happy with is this one, ‘Dear departed’, and it has been selected as a finalist in the Olive Cotton Award for Photographic Portraiture, opening today.

Here’s my artist statement about the image:

“My beautiful sister Kate died recently, after losing her fraught 20-year battle with an eating disorder. Kate loved walking in her local national park, finding nature less troublesome than human relationships.

After losing her, it struck me how bereavement plays tricks on your mind, making you believe that you see the object of your grief everywhere around. Although I don’t believe in an ‘after-life’, I do believe that our life energy is absorbed back into the universe in the same way that our body is.

This portrait combines these ideas – an ephemeral vision of Kate emerges from, and represents the dispersal of her spirit into, the natural environment that she loved.”

Here is a link to the Olive Cotton Award for Photographic Portraiture 2013 catalogue.