The Futurist's Dilemma . . .salt              

(Collective Attrition) A contemplation of both the personal and the collective attrition of memory. When is it that a person stops looking forward and starts looking back?


Collective memory has recently emerged as a major focus of interdisciplinary research. This study is part of a growing body of literature exploring the social construction of collective memory, the relationship between history and memory, the role of commemorative narratives and rituals in contemporary social life, and their impact on the political sphere. It explores how a society of immigrants, engaged in constructing a distinct national identity and culture, recreated it’s roots in the past. These collective memories of recovered roots became a driving force for change and a means of articulating new values and ideas. In this process the new nation relied heavily on both history and tradition. By introducing a highly selective attitude to them, alternating between rejection and acceptance, suppression and elaboration, it has reconstructed a new national memory and tradition.” Yael Zerubaval (1995) Recovered Roots: Collective Memory and the making of Israeli National Tradition.

Recovering Roots . . .

An Exhibition by Christopher Lawrie and Belinda Allen. Hazelhurst Regional Art Gallery May 30 til June 11

'For Christopher Lawrie the corrosive nature of salt provides an aesthetic and cultural metaphor for the attrition of memory and a colonial past. His installations of works on paper utilise historical artifacts to form contexts for contemporary readings of the past.' Hazelhurst Catalogue


'Think of salt, and if you are romantically inclined you’ll imagine the crusty remains of a swim in the ocean on a hot summer’s day. For Christopher Lawrie, the mineral forms the basis of his installation pieces both as sculptural tools and as metaphores for history. Using objects which have a unique story, from centenary celebration maps used to line a kitchen floor to music certificates found in a second hand store. The artist salts the paper creating beautiful, textured sculptural pieces. By literally giving history solidity the works confront the viewer with their own role in its continuous evolvement.' Naomi Robson Cofa UNSW