Laura Jones has been shortlisted in the Wynne Prize for Australian landscape painting.
About her shortlisted triptych, Jones explains, ‘Early this year, I heard rumours that fields of tiny pink flannel flowers were popping up all over the Blue Mountains, just west of my hometown of Kurrajong, NSW. Actinotus forsythii are described as bushfire ephemerals, and this event was a once-in-a-lifetime mass synchronicity of flowering. Their seeds have lain dormant for years, requiring a rare confluence of events to trigger germination – smoke from the catastrophic 2020 bushfires and the heavy rain of last summer. No-one had seen them grow on this scale since the 1950s – they blanketed the ridges and completely altered the feel of the landscape. Swallowing up blackened tree trunks and burnt banksia remains, they were a bittersweet reminder of the firestorm that preceded them.’
The exhibition is on display at the Art Gallery of New South Wales until 26 September 2021.
Image: Laura Jones, Bushfire ephemerals – Wollangambe wilderness, 2021. Photo: AGNSW, Mim Stirling