'The process of photography is so beautiful that sometimes I find myself working in a state of absolute disbelief as the pictures present themselves to me.'
This is Australia through the eyes of one of our most gifted photographers. Rex Dupain's country is a place of iconic but nameless landscapes and astonishing visual contradictions. We see a shadowy city bridge through the thick dust of a desert storm; a ballet of prosaic human activity played out on a beach; youthful pride and defiance amid a landscape of rural despair.
Dupain renders the ordinary remarkable. In one photograph he captures a humble weatherboard house lit up, lantern-like, by the deep light of an autumn afternoon; in another he creates a scene rich with dramatic possibility by posing a passer-by 'model' in front of a seaside mural. He delights in the unrehearsed setting, the chance encounter, but is not afraid to adjust reality to deepen the meaning or power of an image.
Through this superb collection, Dupain reintroduces us to the bush, coast and suburbs of a diverse country. His images help us refine our appreciation of the power of our physical environment, both natural and man-made, and deepen our understanding of a flawed but ultimately extraordinary culture.