Local creatives shine spotlight on life in lockdown

Published on 19 July 2021


Council is proud to support the work of Jude van Daalen and Belinda Jackson in ‘Together Apart: Life in Lockdown’, an exhibition of photos and stories documenting the experience of Hobsons Bay residents during Melbourne’s first COVID-19 lockdown.

‘Together Apart – Life in Lockdown’ began as a neighbourly conversation over the back fence by two Altona locals to break the solitude of lockdown.

Portrait photographer Jude van Daalen and journalist Belinda Jackson collated the stories and photographs of 60 people in their neighbourhood during Melbourne’s first lockdown into a limited-edition book.

A selection of images and interviews from the book, representing the voices of people of different ages and backgrounds, will be on display at the Williamstown Library until Tuesday 17 August and at the Hobsons Bay Civic Centre from Monday 2 August to Monday 30 August.

In addition, flags featuring images from the exhibition will be flown at various locations in Altona.

This free exhibition is supported by Hobsons Bay City Council through its ‘Make it Happen’ Grants program which promotes community-led initiatives to help residents recover and reconnect after the COVID-19 pandemic.

Belinda Jackson and Jude van Daalen will give a free author’s talk at Williamstown Library on Tuesday 3 August from 6.30pm to 7.30pm. The event is free but bookings are required. Visit libraries.hobsonsbay.vic.gov.au/library-events/1267-together-apart-life-in-lockdown to book. 

The exhibition and author talk will be subject to COVID-19 restrictions.

For more information on the project and book, visit www.lockdownstories.com.au


Quotes attributable to Mayor Jonathon Marsden:

“The Make it Happen Grants are all about helping people reconnect with each other and that is exactly what this exhibition does. Learning how our friends and neighbours spent the lockdowns of 2020 helps us process our own experiences and will hopefully help us feel less isolated in the event of future lockdowns.

“Throughout this pandemic we’ve heard many heart-warming stories of residents connecting with each other while staying physically apart. This exhibition is a perfect example of the resilience and generosity which helped – and will continue to help – our community through adversity.”

Quotes attributable to Jude van Daalen:

“Like so many others, I felt more isolated than I’d ever felt before. I needed connection, and taking these photographs was a way to reach into our community and bring people together.”

Quotes attributable to Belinda Jackson:

“These stories create a time capsule of this extraordinary period in our lives. Told to us in the midst of the pandemic, they are raw and emotional, without the colouring of hindsight.”


Editor’s notes

Jude van Daalen is a portrait photographer working from her studio in Melbourne’s west. She has over 15 years’ experience telling stories through photography, translating those experiences into gallery-style artwork. See themelbourneportraitstudio.com

Journalist Belinda Jackson has worked as a features writer, finance journalist and copywriter and specialises in travel. Originally from Melbourne, she’s visited every continent, and lived in three. Before the world shut down, she was a columnist for The Age/Sydney Morning Herald’s Traveller section. See globalsalsa.com

Together Apart: Life in Lockdown

Authors Jude van Daalen & Belinda Jackson

ISBN 978-0-6488845-3-8, 250x250mm

RRP $79


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