(Australia, United States of America 12 Nov 1960 – )
125.0 x 184.0 cm image
Internationally acclaimed Australian artist Tracey Moffatt has exhibited her work extensively since the 1980s. Her films have been screened in the official competition at the Cannes Film Festival and her photographs have featured in numerous major exhibitions. Over the course of her career, she has pursued many different thematic concerns such as Aboriginal heritage, Australian art, female identity, and colonial history. Her 2013 body of work, ‘Spirit Landscapes’, explores the spiritual resonance of place and its relationship to memory.
In ‘As I lay back on my Ancestral Land’, the artist’s own body is fused with the land. Drenched in a saturated yellow hue, this large-scale photograph stiches multiple forms together. A dense canopy of clouds is fringed by branches and leaves. Buried within this canopy is the naked torso of a woman, her body barely perceptible through the radiating forms of the clouds. This woman, Moffatt herself, is woven into the landscape. Accurate scale and perspective are renounced as the woman’s torso towers over the scene, suspended in the air. Neither her body nor the clouds are fully opaque. Both retain a transparency and infiltrate the other. Stripped of its corporeality, the body becomes transcendental.