The Healing Landscape of Great Great Aunt Susan

My great great Aunt Susan arrived in VDL in 1826 aged five. Her family was granted 500 acres on the east coast. The land belonged to the Oyster Bay Aboriginal tribe. In 1828 Susan and her older sister went to guard a herd of young bulls. They failed to see an approaching group of Aborigines. Susan was knocked unconscious by a blow with a waddy. She survived but was always considered “delicate”, and was occasionally strapped to the back of a plough to be close to the healing powers of the “good earth”.
The presumed affinity between body and landscape was the starting point for this piece, as I reflected on my cultural links with colonial Tasmania.

Katy Woodroffe


Acrylic & ground pigment on paper