View2021. Huw Davies Gallery, Photo Access. Until February 27.
View2021 is a selection from 11 early career photographers and photomedia artists - Kayla Adams, Bridget Baskerville, April Davis, Sofia Dimarhos, Alex Flannery, Claire Fletcher, Tessa Ivison, David Lindesay, Adanna Obinna, Janhavi Salvi and Jordan Stokes.
The curators have arranged the exhibits so that viewers should find themselves exploring works that are, in some ways, progressively more challenging.
We commence with Janhavi Salvi's "Mary had a little lamb" - not about the nursery rhyme per se, but about the processes through which humans have turned sheep into domesticated animals. This is done via a marvellous interactive, three-dimensional digital interface coded by Salvi.
Then we see several images Tessa Iverson captured using a digital camera fitted with a body cap with three pinholes. Each incorporate three perspectives of the same rural landscape. This experimental work is further evidence that this contemporary artist is growing in her practice.
Kayla Adams shows her interest in the urban form, with images of the one building taken from different places where she could emphasise sightlines and symmetry.
Jordan Stokes exhibits three prints of Burrinjuck Dam, each taken while it was shrouded by smoke and severely impacted by drought. These again remind us how the land has been impacted by climate change.
Bridget Baskerville contributes four large prints, plus a hand-crafted photobook of images, all captured in her home town of Kandos. They range from almost formal studies inside her grandmother's home to quite raw images. One is titled "Tennis Court" - we would have no idea of that location without the title. The same is true of another - "Brogan's Creek Road". That does not matter - both images successfully tell us things about this small town in the Central Tablelands. A video on the Photo Access online gallery has a soundtrack of Baskerville's reminiscences as she turns the pages of the book.
Further along are three richly colourful portraits by Adanna Obinna of her friend Julia. They beautifully document this woman of colour, an ex-refugee now settled in Australia. Three images by April Davis explore the attachments we have to our bodies, land and objects. With her grandmother during the pandemic, she photographed the two of them indoors, herself wearing a formal gown intended to draw our attention to the constraints experienced.
Then there are works by by Alex Flannery - two of places and two of people from the Cowra area where he grew up. For me, the people images are the strongest, essentially because they portray interesting characters.
Claire Fletcher shows just one print - "I am my Mother's Daughter". It cleverly superimposes portraits of both herself and her mother so as to explore their relationship. David Lindesay also displays just one print - an intimate, softly lit "accompanied self-portrait" intended to turn the artist's queer gaze on moments of emotional and physical connection.
Finally, we spend time looking at a video by Sofia Dimarhos, and closely studying three inkjet prints that she has turned into wonderfully intriguing sculptural forms.
All these works use the human body as raw material. They both explore and celebrate its form.