Recipient of the Kayell Digital Print Award.



I am an emerging print-informed artist who draws on my experience as a contemporary female Australian Army veteran and war widow to investigate a tense and problematic personal and national relationship with traditional Australian war commemoration.

Inspired by the post-war Belgian counter-monument movement, which has in turn influenced Black Lives Matter protest art, I imagine what an Australian counter-monument would look like if it reflected war’s far-reaching physical and emotional costs. My work uses corrosive processes to deconstruct the rigidity of traditional stone and bronze war monuments, thereby contesting their presumptions of a fixed truth. By utilising the fragility of paper and shadow, my memorials accept fallibility and reflect the transitory nature of time and memory. My work contends with notions of the official archive by questioning who is excluded from official institutional memory. In glitches, I remember those forgotten in the primacy of the legends we valorise. Through murky, inky atmospherics, I set engineered ‘mythscapes’ in stark contrast to the real experiences of modern warfare. My small but iconic, complex, and layered memorials suggest that when as a nation we can contend with all our histories, we will not be as reliant on outdated myths and icons to tell our stories.

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Kat Rae