THE REST IS WEST
AARON CHAPMAN

1 – 15 September, 2018

One of my schoolmates had a property out in Beaudesert where we’d test the bravery of our adolescence with motorbikes, guns and alcohol (never at the same time). We learned what hungover was on those car trips home. We learned the heat without a sea breeze. Wonglepong was nothing more than a weird name on a sign. Canungra was the place you stopped for pies and chocolate milk. We figured someone divined the mountain’s winding roads to punish kids like us.

A young boy’s grave lies
a couple over from Edwin’s.
No palette on a tombstone.
No tombstone, no name.
Just a handful of cowboys
and Indians working together
to protect the soil they stand in.
The forest green of toy soldiers
and the red lining of the numbered
birthday candles make me miss Christmas.

We didn’t think about the west growing up. The Gold Coast was a line in the sand, not separating geography, but marking it. A physical and emotional guide of how we travel.

Up and down.

Up and down.

Up and down.
— Aaron Chapman, 2018

Local photographer Aaron Chapman responds to watercolourist, Edwin Bode’s artworks in the HOTA (Home of the Arts) Gallery Collection by exploring the identity and landscapes of settlements west of the Pacific Highway, and the notion of there being more to the Gold Coast than just its famous coastline.

Aaron Chapman (b. 1990, Denpasar, Indonesia) is a photographer and writer from the Gold Coast, Australia. After several years travelling and working abroad, he returned to the Gold Coast to complete a Bachelor of Arts at Griffith University. This return home marked the start of his focused storytelling practice and its ongoing development. Chapman now poetically engages the two mediums of photography and writing to create a more intimate sense of place. Currently, he is working on long-term projects documenting his hometown by considering how, as a tourist city, its subcultures and associated stereotypes influence the perception of those who live there permanently.

A joint project with HOTA Gallery.

Supported by Shibui Film.

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