Using images and text, the artists continue to explore the themes they began to examine in Quaranta Australis (2008), which looked at Sydney’s Quarantine Station, where the unwanted and marginalised were incarcerated. Patterns of insensitivity, institutional neglect, culpability, and political point scoring, are set against the values of compassion and self-sacrifice, as the historical site is overlayed with the contemporary treatment of refugees and populist fears of invasion by increasing numbers of ‘boat-people.’ A series of numbers refer to global and Australian statistics regarding refugees, while the number ‘1’ refers to a specific refugee, George Jacob Samuel Christin, a Tamil man fleeing Sri Lanka for Australia, who died in avoidable circumstances. The dramatic size of words such as ‘Pushback’ denote the strident and dehumanizing language of populist politicians. The text reproduces fragments from Matthew Arnold’s Dover Beach, W. B. Yeat’s The Second Coming, Hannah Arendt’s The Origins of Totalitarianism, Julian Burnside, John Milton, William Shakespeare, and contemporary newspapers. The title comes from some graffiti written in the 1970s by a refugee on the walls of a building barricaded with wire at the Sydney Quarantine Station, which helped the artists narrow the focus from the mass of unnamed ‘refugees’ down to the individual or to ‘one man,’ in order to ask the question, ‘where is our humanity?’
Variable limited edition of three books. Signed and dated by the artists.
"A collaboration between Gwen Harrison, painter & printmaker, and Sue Anderson, letterpress printer & designer binder. Multiplate photocollagraph and collagraph intaglio prints, some with chine colle. Letterpress printing on an 1880 Albion, handset Egmont lead type & various wood type. Printed with Charbonnel ink on Velion Arches 400 gsm, bound with kangaroo vellum & etched Tasmanian Blackwood." --Colophon, pasted on inner box lid.
Library's SR copy is unnumbered but is no. 2 of 3. An invitation for the Red Gallery exhibition accompanies the book.
Unique sculptural binding sewn on three double vellum slips with reverse guard forming spine support. Spine support lined with red leather with red dyed Tasmanian blackwood covers. Spine decoration consists of recessed handmade kozo rolled onto linen cord, decorated with a black and white striped design in black printer's ink, supported by red oasis leather loops. Front and rear boards covered with semi-transparent kangaroo vellum over collaged etchings and letterpress text lining. A semi-circular band of red ink has been etched into the covers. Another mirrored partial red circle has been etched onto the wooden stub. Covers attached with broad vellum slips laced into the boards. Clamshell box made by Wayne Stock, covered with red cloth with red paper lining. Colophon pasted on inner box lid.
||Exhibited in: Quaranta Australis, by Gwen Harrison & Sue Anderson, Manly Art Gallery & Museum, 7 September - 7 October 2012. Exhibited in: Red Gallery, Contemporary Art Space, Fitzroy North, Vic., 6-23 February 2013.