Cover image of the review
Installation view of Danie Mellor, *The Sun also Sets*. Courtesy of Tolarno Galleries. Image: Andrew Curtis

The Sun also Sets

5 Sep 2020
Tolarno Galleries 7 Aug - 5 Sep 2020

In his latest exhibition at Tolarno Galleries, Danie Mellor continues to use Western modes of picturing to address the impact of colonisation on his Indigenous forebears. Mellor has Mamu and Ngadjon ancestry and uses drawing, photography, and sculpture to reflect on the losses both groups have sustained as a result of European invasion. He typically sets his works on their Country in Northern Queensland, in what is now the Tablelands rainforest.

The twelve works shown this year include four new photomontages of a kind Mellor has been making for several years. Printed on metallic paper and again set in the Tablelands, these composites show the faces of local men (and, in one case, a skull) blended with and gazing out from dense foliage. The faces are derived from archival photographs taken at the turn of the last century by colonial photographers. Mellor made the photographs of foliage himself using an infrared camera, a technique that turns foliage stark white, giving the forest an irradiated quality that contrasts strongly with the shadows and dark skin tones in the archival images. The merger of the two produces haunting and enigmatic fusions of people and Country.

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