Celebrations and commemorations of family

Articles and Essays

Celebrations and commemorations of family

Paula Broom , 03 Nov 2021

Image: Natalia Grono from Invisible threads

We're counting down to the launch of the 2021 Head On Photo Festival and getting excited to show you some of the excellent exhibitions in this year's line-up.  

Those of us living in Sydney have spent much of this year in lockdown. Family has never felt more important - whether locked down with them or away from them. So, we thought we'd let you have another sneaky peek at some of the shows in this year's Festival but these explore notions around family.

Let's start with Natalie Grono's Invisible threads. Many of you may already be aware of Natalie's work. An Australian photo artist with a Walkley award for excellence in photojournalism, Natalie recently featured in our popular Spotlight, sharing her insights about successfully photographing families and children. Her beautiful series of black and white photographs explores the everyday life of her daughters.  

 

Image: Clair Robins from Merging present and past 

Clair Robins, a photographic visual artist and educator from Leicester in the UK, takes a different angle on family. She records and reimagines keepsakes that become a record of her family history, souvenirs from her past; used, loved, practical or treasured. Through the diptychs she creates, she pieces together fond memories of her childhood; a history she sees repeating itself in her daughters' lives. View Clair's exhibition here.

 

Image: David Wallin from I was too late

Photographer David Wallin's I was too late is a heartwrenching document of his estranged father's isolated final moments and thoughts. Visiting his father's house after his death, David had hoped to find something to help fill in the 33 missed years of their lives. It offered David a final chance to understand his father, but only through what he had left behind. 

 

Image: Stan De Zoysa from Caminos sin cruzar

Stan De Zoysa also searches for missing elements of his father's life in Caminos sin cruzar. After his father's death when he was a toddler, Stan De Zoysa lost touch with his paternal family and its traditions. These images represent his emotional journey, combining memory with the present, in the search for his father's remaining relatives in Sri Lanka. 

As you can see the work is as varied as it is excellent, so make sure you catch these and the other wonderful exhibitions in this year's Festival. 

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