All proceeds from the sale of this work will be donated to the Victorian Bushfire appeal.
This image shot at Beechworth in N.E victoria.
Myth, folklore and fact, it is a given that all three of these get intertwined as time goes by… much like Chinese whispers. How much of what we hear today can we actually believe is real, and further to that, how much of what we see, capture and conjure up in our heads is real and how could it ever reach the realm of reality and therefore make history? I love history, a story and a little bit of artistic license thrown in for good measure, and I especially love a place and an environment that stirs up a certain amount of uncertainty, intrigue and ambiguity.
Shooting in a former Lunatic asylum, at Beechworth’s former Mayday Hills Hospital, the question arises, am I really seeing this as it is, as it should be or what it was…? The past is easily buried and lost amongst the exquisite grounds and the romanticism that abounds, though it is undeniable, to even the uninitiated, that this place has a significant story to tell, regardless of whether it is myth, folklore or plain old fact – It has a life of its own.
One story tells of an eccentric doctor who would patrol the grounds incessantly, and according to local folklore, he is still seen sauntering ‘round the grounds, especially near the Ha-Ha wall. Another tells of young children playing and lingering amongst the trees and in the general vicinity of the wall. Less specific, though probably more historically significant, is the original female ward of the mental hospital, the ward that housed the worst female patients – now condemned, it is the only piece of Victorian asylum/hospital architecture that remains intact, in an almost original and untouched state, it is said to still house a number of guests, some of whom are said to be seen on occasion through the gaps in the doors and the breaks in the glass.
Whether the stories are fact or fiction, there is an irrefutable amount of romanticism that emanates from every inch of the place and it seems to grow with every story told and every image captured…