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Luke Sciberras White Christmas, Bell, NSW

oil on board

160 x 244 cm; 162.5 x 246.5 cm framed

Immediately after the fires of December 2019 I walked through the ashen bush and as the stumps and ground were still hot and smouldering it struck me I was immersed in a predominantly white landscape. The bark of the trees was dotted with fine white powdery ash and the nuts and pods had cracked open, spilling their seeds. Though the forest floor retained an incredible heat, the sky had momentarily cleared to form crisp blue shards against the shapes left after the blaze. Various versions of white had briefly formed a fine downy layer all over the place, changing my way of seeing a habitat gutted by fire into a visual cleanse rather than a sooty black mess.

Luke Sciberras, 2020