"Dream of Ghosts" opened at Cowra Regional Art Gallery

To coincide with the 73rd anniversary of the Cowra Breakout, Stephen Copland’s installation “Dream of Ghosts” was officially opened at the Cowra Regional Art last Friday. 

Images stay in our minds when words fade.

Dr Roslyn Russell

On hand to open Copland’s exhibition was Dr Roslyn Russell, historian, writer, museum curator and Chair of the UNESCO Australian Memory of the World Committee. Dr Russell said that Copland’s work has the ability to move beyond the words of the historian on the events of the Cowra Breakout. 

Dr Roslyn Russell.

Dr Roslyn Russell.

“Art is able to imbue an historical moment with more meaning, more colour, more life and more passion,” she said.  

Copland’s work included a video installation with images relating to the violence of the Breakout, sculptures made of burnt wood and metal and large scale drawings of the guard tower. Dr Russell said Copland drew on both memories of the Breakout and combined it with aspects of traditional, Japanese culture. 

“Stephen's work shows 'an inferno of human tragedy based on honour and death from a Japanese cultural perspective,’” she said. 

“Stephen uses the process of material thinking… to infuse matter with something rousing, challenging and even confronting.” 

Dream of Ghosts runs until August 20.