Events

David Blühdorn - PhD Examination Exhibition

Summary

Wildness and Artefact: Re-presenting the Divergent Trajectories of Lakes Gordon and Pedder

Start Date

7th Apr 2017

End Date

23rd Apr 2017

Venue

Plimsoll Gallery, Tasmanian College of the Arts, Hunter Street, Hobart

The Wetland Aspirations of the Inflowing Huon River (Pedder Impoundment)

Image credit: David R. Blühdorn, The Wetland Aspirations of the Inflowing Huon River (Pedder Impoundment)

Wildness and Artefact: Re-presenting the Divergent Trajectories of Lakes Gordon and Pedder

The Gordon River Power Development in southwest Tasmania was completed in the early 1970s, creating two large hydro-industrial impoundments: Lakes Gordon and Pedder. The Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area now surrounds these impoundments.

This thesis is concerned with visually exploring the divergent evolution of the impoundments and researching wild aspects of their associated streams. It focuses on water as the dominant element in hydropower generation, and as a key agent of wildness. The thesis’ research questions address: wild aspects of water; the structural artefacts and their management regimes; their interactions with wild processes; and how these factors might advance relevant visual discourse.

Multiple trips to the field locations facilitated the thesis’ investigations. In the Pedder Impoundment, the divergence was found to be attributable to water’s engineered persistence. This enabled the re-presentation of aspects of weather, dam leakage, the development of macrophyte beds, and the persistence of aseasonal wetlands. In the Gordon Impoundment, the principal driver of divergence was the market-driven withdrawal of water. This led to the visual examination of the recently dewatered littoral, which exhibited the effects of inundation and pre-impoundment logging, as well as the impoundment’s preservative powers, and its terrestrial and fluvial regenerative processes. Water’s intrinsic wildness was explored through subsurface imagery of both impoundments’ inflowing waterways.

Exhibition opening: Fri 7 April, 5:30pm - 7:00pm
Exhibition dates: Fri 7 - Sun 23 April
Gallery Hours: Wed - Mon 12pm - 5pm during exhibitions
Closed Tuesdays and Public holidays