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seeking REFUGE, seeking RECKONING

Published on Monday, 29 April 2024 at 2:39:47 PM

Renowned artist Ruth Halbert invites audiences to ponder the complex question of arrival in Australia through her thought-provoking exhibition, seeking REFUGE, seeking RECKONING,


In this two-part exhibition, Halbert delves into the diverse narratives of migration, belonging, and refuge inviting audiences to reflect on the complexities of human mobility and the pursuit of safety.


The gallery's first room features an immersive installation of paper vessels, symbolising the myriad journeys that bring individuals to Australia. Visitors are encouraged to contribute their own stories, creating a collaborative tapestry of experiences.


The second room asks viewers to confront the treatment of those who seek refuge in Australia, igniting discussion about compassion, and the responsibility of nations in addressing humanitarian crises.


Drawing attention to the disparity between historical migration narratives and contemporary policies, Halbert asks why a nation built by boat arrivals now penalises those who arrive in a similar manner.


Based in Denmark, WA, Halbert's artistic journey has been shaped by her background in science and her deep connection to textile artistry. With a diverse portfolio spanning exhibitions across Western Australia and beyond, she brings a unique perspective to the exploration of migration and identity.


Ruth Halbert said she hopes to spark real conversations with her exhibition.


“As an artist, I aim to create spaces for reflection and dialogue where 'seeking REFUGE, seeking RECKONING' invites viewers to engage with the multifaceted narratives of migration and refuge in Australia,” she said.


“Through art, we have the opportunity to challenge perspectives and foster empathy towards those who seek safety and belonging."


seeking REFUGE, seeking RECKONING opens at the Albany Town Hall on Friday 3 May from 6pm – 8pm with an artist talk scheduled for Saturday 4 May at 11am.


Halbert will also be present in the gallery on selected days throughout the exhibition to engage with visitors and collect additional arrival stories for the installation.


The City of Albany is proud to support this thought-provoking exhibition, with special thanks to the City of Melville for the loan of an artwork.


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