I have just come across this current exhibition of trees at the Monash University Museum of Art entitled Tree Story. I do not know much about the exhibition, or the narrative that is implied in the word 'story'. The information on the MUMA website is very minimal. It says that the exhibition's:
"creative practices "create a ‘forest’ of ideas relating to critical environmental and sustainability issues. At its foundation—or roots—are Indigenous ways of knowing and a recognition of trees as our ancestors and family...Tree Story takes inspiration from the underground networks, information sharing and mutual support understood to exist within tree communities, and poses the question: what can we learn from trees and the importance of Country?"
There are no links to the Tree Story podcast, or to The Tree School publication on the website. So we don't have access to the fleshing out of the above ideas by the curators. This minimal online approach to an exhibition is standard art gallery practice .The art galleries continue to assume that exhibitions are about people physically visiting the gallery, even after a year of living with the Covid-19 pandemic and its restrictions on people movement.
Does the use of 'school' suggest that trees have the capacity to learn? Or does tree school refer to a place where people can gather for communal learning and the production of knowledge grounded in lived experience and connection to communities? I have no idea.
From a recent poodlewalk in January 2021:
It is roadside vegetation along Baum Rd
in Waitpinga. Sadly this vegetation is not regenerating, and the strip of roadside vegetation along this road is gradually lessening as the plants and trees slowly continue to die. This is common in this part of the southern Fleurieu Peninsula. There is no caring for this roadside vegetation.
The macro photo below was made on a recent, early morning poodlewalk with Kayla along Depledge Road in Waitpinga on the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia. It was sometime during the 2020 Xmas/New Year period.
I have generally been walking along the back country road in the morning or afternoon to avoid the strong, gusty coastal winds; or for some shade from the late afternoon summer sun. The rhizomes photography has been rather limited this summer.
This branch of a pink gum ( Eucalyptus fasciculosa) is in the local bushland in Waitpinga adjacent to Depledge Rd on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia.
The picture was made in the early morning in mid-Spring (ie., October) about 15 minutes after sunrise. I often walk down Depledge Rd on a poodlewalk to avoid the strong, south-westerly winds off the southern ocean. The bush on the west side of the road provides us with protection from the wind.
It has been a cold, wet, windy, spring so far. We have had so much rain along the southern coast fo the Fleurieu Peninsula. However, there were a few days of fine weather between the days of steady rain in early October, and so we were able to wander around the local bushland in Waitpinga.
This picture was made in the early morning inbetween the rains sweeping across the coast:
It is a grounded branch of a pink gum in local bushland in Waitpinga. The tree is growing along the ground.
This picture of roadside vegetation was made on a recent early morning poodlewalk with Kayla along Depledge Rd in Waitpinga during the recent stormy conditions. Recent as in late September.
We chose to walk along this road as the adjacent bushland provided us with some shelter from the strong, gale force south westerly winds battering the coast. There was no traffic along the road, and so we had it to ourselves; apart from the usual rabbits, kangaroos and foxes criss crossing Depledge road.
The morning of 2nd August was foggy and, after the poodlewalk along Depledge Road in Waitpinga with Kayla we ended up slowly walking around the local bushland :
Foggy mornings like this are rare in the southern Fleurieu Peninsula. We have only had two such mornings this winter.
In the last week or so I have been spending the early morning poodlewalks with Kayla exploring a small patch of bushland as a contrast to the coastal rocks. The bush runs alongside Depledge Rd in Waitpinga, and I am assuming this patch has been put aside as a result of the Landcare moment in the late 20th century.
On these bush walks I am using a handheld digital camera to build up some supplementary material for the forthcoming online walking /photography exhibition at Encounters Gallery. This will open in August as a part of the SALA Festival. I am also using these walks to find some suitable subject matter for a 5x4 photo session. This is one session that has been done. In the first instance the 5x4 photos are for an upcoming online exhibition for the Friends of Photography Group in August.
When walking in the bush reserve I follow the trails that have laid down by the kangaroos who crewe regular visitors to the bushland. If I didn't walk their trails iIwould be walking around in circles with no sense of where I was.
I made the photo below in the late afternoon of June 20--winter solstice--when I was on a poodlewalk with Maleko. As we were wandering back to the car through the bushland reserve in Waitpinga after a photo session with a medium format film camera I made the photo in passing just before dusk.
I didn't think much of it at the time, and I forgot all about it--until I uploaded the photos to check what the possibilities there were for from my recent scoping for another film-based photoshoot. This looked to be a good possibility--one worth checking out more consciously.
Even though it had been rain all day I decided to go looking for the 2 trees this afternoon. It took me 2 hours of wandering around amongst the passing showers before I finally found these 2 trees. I judged that the subject matter was an afternoon photo session rather than a morning one and that it needed soft afternoon light and a blueish sky, rather than dull light and overcast skies.
Whilst on the early morning poodlewalks with Kayla I have started to explore a small bush "reserve" running alongside agricultural land and Depledge Rd in Waitpinga. I presume that this small block of native bushland has been put aside from the old Waitpinga landcare programme.
Kayla and I usually walk along the adjacent Depledge Rd from 6.30 to 7.15 am, then around sunrise we enter the bush "reserve" and wander within it for around 45 minutes. I am looking for possible photographic subjects and occasionally I do come across one --such as the one above.