I lived in Quebec most of my adult life and Once upon a time I was told I was a raven by a wise native American woman. At first I thought it was an insult. My European background made it difficult to visualised a positively the black bird. She explained to me I was “change”, the crossroad, living between worlds. The raven for the Canadian first nation is the symbol of metamorphosis, transformation…
I had dreamed to live on the other side of the planet while growing up in Provence. I was a sad little girl in France and swore to myself to escape one day.
After my studies I went to Canada and lived there for over a quarter of a century but always dreaming of the other side of the mirror, “aux antipodes”: Australia.
I finally reach Oz for the first time in January 2011. Since then I had to make life changing choices and burn many bridges. The candle is now lighted on both end into a contrasting ephemeral existence.
Que sera sera but I am not lost anymore.
You might be transported to other continents by some exotic pictures, postal cards blue ocean and white mountains, but I am travelling within your daily life in these places we ignore or are disturbed by. I see ghosts who give my life meaning and dimension.
My name is Agnes Durbet, I am a Canadian in Australia
I came to this country on a dream expecting to be disappointed by an all too rough reality. But I fell in a magic well of creative minds in the most unexpected place.
Visiting a childhood friend (Ape) who works out of sewage treatment and water filtration centres in and around Sydney, I went into the centre of the earth and back, deep into the belly of the city where its guts had the gloomy look and smell of a putrid dragon. Most of the places are surrounded by glorious scenery, offering a world of deep contrasts.
Industrial grounds in the mountains or on the ocean shores are hidden to the public but so ever extravagant and rich. The major theme is water in all its forms, salty or fresh, clean or soiled.
I recognised it was once in a life time chance and unimaginable gift.
Recording everyday scenes and adding some of my perceptions to an already colourful set of characters: Each wave is unique, each worker as well. All create magical scenes made in Hell or Heaven, striking contrasts and a story worth telling.
I found poetry in challenging places. Beauty is trapped is a job well done and in professionally crafted solutions. Tradesmen are a gems, the industrial background a stage, Ape the main character. His words and photographs are as striking as his daily work, defining a precious mind and philosophy.
Then all changed again and I found myself under the Australian tropics. no more industrial surroundings just the infinite beauty of greens and milky turquoise filling my horizon. I am on top of the world looking down to Repulse Bay. Strange name for such a beautiful area It was where James Cook in June 1770 “had hoped to lay up his ship, HMS Endeavour, there for repairs, but the bay was insufficiently sheltered for that purpose. Cook therefore gave the name Repulse to the bay and the small group of islands at its entrance.”
A new life a new chance. Next, by my side the Ape. Let’s walk together on the wild side.