Acrylic on Ply-board
30 x 30cm
The recent earthquake in Türkiye was extraordinary and unparalleled – one of the most devastating humanitarian disasters of recent years.
Like all catastrophes – natural or man-made – humanity is tested. We see the best and worst of human condition on display.
The scale of devastation was amplified by the instant imagery we saw on the other side of the world. Among the most striking for me was the image of a father holding the hand of his daughter, trapped in the earthquake’s aftermath. As the father of a daughter, it had a particular poignancy for me. I was struck by the loyalty and respect of the heartbroken father, bravely and vigilantly staying with his daughter. Respect is sometimes the only tangible response when humanity is confronted with disasters of the magnitude.
For me this evoked the Gallipoli Creed.
The comradeship between Australia and Türkiye was quickly demonstrated as emergency teams of skilled Australian disaster workers were deployed, further underpinning the shared love of country between our two nations.
I have added poppies to the pieces of shattered debris as they symbolize hope, remembrance and consolation. The words of the poet Flanders Fields have a particular relevance:
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie.