As many of you know, we are currently developing “Explorer Stories”, our new collaborative performance featuring Biz Adams’ beautiful footage of Kangaroo Grass ripening here in Poatina. Recently Biz was at Uluru working with Fusion Australia and got distracted by this gorgeous example of Kangaroo Grass near the rock.
Kangaroo grass in the red centre, and here in the heart of Tasmania. Ripening at the same time, glowing tan-red and telling a silent story of the careful management and innovative sustainable sustenance of Aboriginal people Australia-wide over thousands of years.
“Mitchell, Sturt and others spoke of the prodigious growth of oat grass and how much their stock and horses enjoyed and prospered on the feed. Today we refer to that grass as kangaroo grass and it is the mainstay of almost every ‘unimproved’ pasture in the country. In the past it would have been a boon to the Indigenous inhabitants.” Bruce Pascoe, Dark Emu, pg 32
Kangaroo Grass is: adapted to climates and soil types all over the country; perennial – doesn’t require plowing and reseeding each year; germinated by smoke; hardy and resilient; adapted to human harvest – the grain all becomes ripe at once due to sustained harvest by humans.
And as you can see, Bass Straight may have been closed for 10,000 years, but the Kangaroo Grass right here is still flourishing nicely
Thanks Biz (and Pamela) for your collaboration and beautiful images.
Happy Easter to all, from Hannah and Steve at RockSalt Arts