Eve of Incarnation references the biblical story of Eve cast out of the Garden of Eden after eating fruit from the tree of knowledge. In this imagined mythology, an allegory of emigrant experience, Eve is a divine yet earthly entity who has swam across time and tides from the artist’s ancestral lands of Goa, India to find herself on the shores of Boonwurrung country – what is colonially named Point Nepean National Park, Victoria, Australia.
She drapes her naked self in the ‘fabric’ of the landscape– the indigenous and invasive plant species, seaweeds and rocky crags becoming ‘nature couture’. The images reference the artifice of high fashion photography as a resistance to ethnographic projections onto the brown-skinned body in the landscape. The artist’s soft, scarred and otherwise unkempt body wears unsellable ‘garments’ that only exist in the photographic moment, these temporal costumes suitably meditating on transitory contact with others’ ancestral land.
Commonly the ‘nature nude’ photographic genre depicts white bodies in images of supposedly passive, feminine fragility, even though the presence of those bodies on that land is most often the result of colonial violence. These works attempt to acknowledge the artist’s own neo-colonial presence as a being whose ancestry belongs elsewhere, yet desires connection to the country she ‘finds herself’ upon. It is science-fiction that the artist exists on these lands – a result of the apocalyptic colonisations of the lands of India and Australia.
Created while artist-in-residence at Police Point Shire Park via Mornington Peninsular Regional Gallery