A combined Print and Photography end of 2nd year show for Uni.
Marks Lane is the beginning of the beat in Bondi. Used for connecting with other gays it was targeted in the 70’s and 80’s for the place to go to ‘bash a gay’ people would catch a train from all over NSW and meet at Bondi with this specifically in mind and as an event to participate in.
Over 88 men have disappeared along this section with no bodies found. They were believed to be bashed then thrown over the cliff, sometimes still alive, their bodies going out to sea. When survivors of bashings went to police there was little done, it was believed that evidence was lost, or miss handled, a group of underaged boys bashed one man to death with a hammer, they were paroled. This was a very dark time in Australia’s history.
I travelled to Bondi and photographed this area, trying to capture its beauty and seclusion It was heart wrenching to stand in this beautiful sunny popular place, that was used as advertising the great sunny beaches of Australia, ‘Bondi…the playground of the Pacific’.
These photographs were then photo shopped taking away any people and were then presented in Large Black and White photographs in an installation along with reproduced prints of advertisement posters for Bondi, entering the exhibit viewers were faced with a wall of mass reproduced prints of the train route to Bondi with red splotches representing the blood on the hands of those who participated. On the far wall hanging above police tape and empty evidence bags hung a single hammer.
The other tug on the heart was while presenting my work, only one other classmate out of 16 had even heard of this happening. I hope to make this into a traveling exhibition to highlight and educate this part of our dark history.
They have now erected a memorial in the Marks Park.