SEEN, HEARD & BELIEVED;
JOURNEYS TO RECOVERY
My work at Relationships Australia NT as Coordinator of a support service for the Royal Commission into Institutionalised Responses to Child Sexual Abuse is captured in this work.
The Retta Dixon Home Public Hearing and Royal Commission enquiry loomed large. I worked with people from the Stolen Generation who had been sexually abused as children at the Retta Dixon Home, Darwin: hearing, supporting and dealing with the thoughts and painful experiences as well as discussing and working out strategies to support survivors. It is the emotions of the often forgotten and sometimes frail and aged clients, that is captured in my work, and in particular, the survivors’ inner turmoil.
My work is multilayered, taking previously produced lithographic prints to be reformed and reconfigured to be symbolic of the possibilities for people who have been abused, to rekindle, grow and more than survive…the work provides a glimpse of people’s resilience and strength through such adversity.
The prints were originally of cyclonic movements - capturing the emotional turmoil experienced. The knowledge that parts of the physical structure of the Retta Dixon Home, Darwin was blown away during Cyclone Tracy provides additional relevance to using the cyclone image.
So many people were joyous when the cyclone obliterated the Retta Dixon Home, the symbol of such barbarity. The work also depicts healing in the long term and the slow therapeutic growth of the survivors who seek to gain peace.