When is an artwork not an artwork? This circle of light on the gallery floor marks the physical absence of a work called Meeyn Meerreeng (2017) which was once installed here. The piece, a collection of 71 volcanic rocks, originally collected by Millar-Baker’s mother, was painted black by the artist to protect their story. At the artist’s request, and in acknowledgement of the work’s cultural and spiritual significance, (the rocks are taken from Wathaurong, the artist’s birth Country) the installation has been withdrawn so that the rocks can be returned to the Country.
The label in the gallery reads:
“The artist and the exhibition’s curator see the circle of light as indicative of on-going discussions around ideas of inclusive space. Acting as a trace or echo of the sculpture, this luminous marker continues the conveyance of Indigenous knowledge originally carried Meeyn Meerreeng.”
So, is the artwork still present in the gallery? Answers on a postcard, please …