There really is nothing like seeing and feeling the completed book yourself. It is housed in the Bannockburn Library, in the heart of the shire, in a purpose-built reserve collection cabinet. If you are not able to get there, then the next best thing is to see our digitized copy, here.
The shire is on Wathaurong ('Wadawurrung') country, a part of the indigenous Kulin nation. Bunjil the wedgetail eagle is an important symbol of this heritage, so the group was keen to incorporate that imagery into the piece. Andrew captured Bunjil's magestic presence beautifully, and the words of Uncle Bryon and Deanne's contemporary textural artwork brought home the ancient significance of the country we live on.
|extract from the artwork of Andrew Plant.|
|extract from the artwork of Deanne Gilson.|
|extract from the hand papers of Ros Lawson.|
The contribution of European settlers, from the 1850s also influenced our project, with the style, colours and marbled paper of the final book following principals at home in that era. Images of contemporary rural life in the shire were the focus of Anne's prints, and a modern child's take on Bannockburn history from Matt the author added to the richness of our final piece. This was a big project - a real joy to be part of.
|extract from the prints of Anne Langdon.|
|extract from the writing of Matt Porter.|
What is certain, is that it now belongs to the people of the Golden Plains. We hope it will get folks talking and swapping local stories as they look at each page, the way it did for the people who were at the launch. With each turning of the page, the stories and impressions flowed.
Thanks go to these folks for a very enjoyable collaboration:
Ros Lawson, the papermaker
Andrew Plant, the illustrator
Matt Porter, the author
Anne Langdon, the printmaker
Deanne Gilson, the painter
Barry Wemyss, the book artist
Jamal Twycross-Smith, the film-maker
Uncle Bryon Powell, the storyteller
..and to Regional Arts Victoria, and the Golden Plains Shire Council, for their support and faith.
Stay tuned for part 2, to hear about the workshops and community engagement that went into making this book such an expression of our land and people.