pure pigment print on cotton rag
100 x 100cm
edition of 6 + 1AP
Artist Statement
The grave of Matilda Rope lies in the Hartley Vale Cemetery near Lithgow NSW Australia. She died in 1852 aged 14 years. Nothing more is known of her. During colonisation the white settlers of Sydney in the 1800’s gradually moved west in search of more land to inhabit. It meant migration over and through the formidable Blue Mountains to the western plains of NSW. Small cemeteries throughout the mountain villages contain early settler graves; Matilda Rope’s grave is the only Rope family name in the Hartley Vale and nearby historic cemeteries. How and where she died exactly is a mystery. The lines of satin ribbon around the hem of the dress sit like fencing – a declaration of ownership, a symbol of the taking of land from the Indigenous people of Australia.
Exhibitions and Awards
2018 Family of No Man curated by Cosmos exhibition and time capsule, Les Recontres de la Photographie, Arles, France
Commended, 2010 Muswellbrook Photographic Award, Judge Julie Sunderland, Muswellbrook Regional Art Centre
Finalist, 2010 National Photography Prize, Judge Isobel Crombie, Albury Regional Art Centre, Albury