On the Riverine plains and semi-arid desert of the Barkindj people, we find each plant on Beckler’s list and accurately identify and illustrate it.
Our leader is Mali Moir, well known Botanical Artist, who sincerely believes that ‘artists make science visible.’ For the past seven years at the end of September, our group journeys to Menindee on the Darling River in New South Wales. At the same time, we also collect and press a sample for donation to the National Herbarium of Victoria and the National Herbarium of New South Wales. The outcome will provide comparative material (over the 150 year time interval) for information and research in the arts and plant sciences in particular.
Dr Hermann Beckler was a botanical observer and Doctor on the Supply Party of the Burke and Will expedition. We are enjoying the evolution of the project across the four themes of art and science, history and country, and developing a rich base of information for further study.
We hope to develop resources to support the outcomes of the project in several publications. At least 40 art works and other related artefacts will be displayed in our second Art Exhibition at the Art Gallery of Ballarat (AGB) in February 2018.
Gordon Morrison, Director of AGB, writes: ‘This will be a very special exhibition, and we see this project as a natural development of our brief to collect, display and celebrate the art of Australia’s unique natural history.’
This very interesting project is persistently evolving, with great joy.
We conducted our first Exhibition at the Menindee Regional Tourist Association in 2014, when we donated the high quality exhibition prints to the Association for use within the Central Darling Shire. We are continuing to develop our relationship with this remote community in the Central Darling Shire on the banks of the Darling River just south of the Menindee Lakes. Many tourists pass too quickly through this area because the riches of the region are not obvious.
We hope the BBB project will provide the Menindee community and the Barkindji people with resources to share their very special environment with visitors, and would like to develop several publications to support these local opportunities.