Fiona Hall and AJ King Exodust—Crying Country
Last year, Fiona Hall turned her Dark Mofo exhibition space over to AJ King, a Bigambul / Wakka Wakka cultural practitioner, and many other Aboriginal collaborators. Together they all built a bark Pakana cremation hut, after AJ told Fiona about one the French had observed in the 1790s at laylatiya / Recherche Bay, far south from here.
Now, at Mona, Fiona and AJ have teamed up again. A large timber hut—scorched inside and out—stands amid a scene of devastation: a blasted landscape, reminiscent of a fire-bombed logging coupe; blackened, charred, nature’s demise. Voices will be heard. Details will emerge into view, layer upon layer.
Fiona and AJ have much to say about this world that we all share, as you’ll soon discover. Their exhibition project is a lament of sorts, for what has been done to this Earth and still continues. Ashes to ashes. To what end? An endpoint, perhaps, of faith in the grand narrative of progress. A human future not infinite (as if it ever was), but bounded, potentially drastic, and urgently in our own hands.
Curated by Jane Clark and Jarrod Rawlins
Header image: Split Infinitive, 2022, Fiona Hall (detail)
Image courtesy of the artist