Lost Lands Found

Lost Lands Found Dean

Presented by Dean Stewart in partnership with Hobsons Bay City Council

Lost Lands Found is a brand new high density development and an ecological art project being established right in the middle of Altona. However, this new urban development is not highlighting people, but significantly our ecological neighbours – Altona’s local Indigenous wildflowers, grasses, herbs and lilies. 

The concept of the space is to create a small ‘enhanced’ local Flowering Grasslands micro-habitat – a secret wild ecological space, a local landscape and place as if suspended in time, suspended in place: a ‘Lost Lands Found’.

Not that long ago, in the ‘Once As It Was’, Victoria and the west’s rich and biodiverse Flowering Grasslands were the largest Volcanic Plains ecosystem on earth. Stretching westwards, from what is now Melbourne, almost unbroken hundreds of kilometres into South Australia.

However within only four generations of European settlement these once vast and radiant ecosystems are now devastated with less than 1% of our uniquely Victorian Flowering Grasslands ecosystems remaining intact. Our Victorian Flowering Grasslands ecosystem expanses have gone from one of the richest, to one of our entire nation’s most critically threatened.

This ecological art project hopes to inspire individual actions to reverse these local environmental upheavals, as well as getting the community who take the time to reflect on this space to consider not only the ecological damage but significantly to consider the opportunities. 

The project also hopes to inspire the community to make deep personal connections to their local landscape, to re-acquaint one’s self with the local environment, be a part of the complexity, the immense intricate beauty, and the ecological richness of what is right under our feet in our own backyard.

Reconciliation is not just between black and white,

But it is a reconciliation of us all, as a people back with the land

For we are all the newest custodians and caretakers of this ancient lands

Which we now all call Our Home!

Dean Stewart

Lost Lands Found will be located next to the Altona Homestead in Logan Reserve. The project will be offered in the warmer months. In May and June 2019, we invite locals to watch as the seedlings grow and the insects move in. It’s expected that you will see best results in November. 

Over October and November, Lost Lands Found will be hosting a series of free creative workshop as part of the Lost Lands Found Creative Program. The workshops will include drawing, printmaking and weaving and the works will inform a creative project outcome in 2020. For more information or to reserve your spot visit lostlandsfound.eventbrite.com.

For more information on Lost Lands Found please contact arts@hobsonsbay.vic.gov.au