Exhibition: Thanks Pandemic – Stuart Murdoch

Exhibition: Thanks Pandemic – Stuart Murdoch

‘The pandemic that swept the world in 2020, is still impacting many people in many ways two years later. Before the pandemic, Stuart would walk or drive with his cameras to locations of interest to him to make pictures. Of course, being locked indoors put a stymie to all that. Many people had experienced life through a different lens., during the lockdowns. Some feeling challenged others liberated. Stuart too suffered his ups and downs while juggling ‘work from home’ and living at home. 

One of the positives of all this for him was that he was forced to find other ways to flex his creative muscle. He did this by visiting his analogue archive. This archive spans more than 30 years of walking and exploring his home town of Melbourne, using a variety of cameras. The last 20 or so years here in the West and Sunshine. He managed to distil his archive to this handful of images. He hopes these picture can offer some insights into how he has watched this city grow and change. 
 
Over time, some images more than others stick in your ‘craw’ as you work, this is why he printed these photos. The pictures and places are from a constant thread. One that has run throughout his creative career. The urban landscape and humanity’s attempts at taming it or at least co-exist with it. Nature has a way of persevering. Despite our best efforts, wildness lingers. Some of these pictures attempt to explore these ideas.
 
Another driving factor in the choice of the final images for him was, technological. Materials have changed a lot since he bought his first packet of Agfa paper from a US retailer around 1990. These changes have enabled him to revisit his archive. With this in mind he explored other ways  of making work. Ways that he may have felt was not workable all those years ago.
 
Stuart is a photographer and artist. He has lived and worked in Naarm [Melbourne] for most of his life. He began studying photography in the late 1980s. At 26 he was one of the older students in his class. He was a relative late comer to the art scene. None the less he is still inquisitive about how photography can be used to record and share ideas. He has exhibited on and off in both group and solo exhibitions, from Melbourne to Adelaide.
 
His formal studies culminated with a Master of Arts in 2002.
 
He is however, still learning to this day.’

Photograph above: Sunshine 2006, former croquet club. 195 x 195 mm toned silver gelatin print

Hunt Club Community Arts Centre. Deer Park. 7 October – 4 December 2022

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Stuart is a Melbourne based photographer.

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