Elise Hilder, <i>Arrival, Winton</i> and <i>The Plant People I (Palaeobotanics), Winton</i>, 2014, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i>Eromangasaurus (Elasmosaurid plesiosaur), Richmond</i>, <i>Lot I, Dinosaur Drive, Winton</i> and <i> Laboratory in the Landscape, Winton</i>, 2013, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i>The Pit, Winton</i>, <i>Age of Digging, Winton</i> and <i> Morning Walk, Pete Site, Winton</i>, 2013, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i>The Watchers, Winton</i> and <i>Dinosaur Loader CAT 916, Winton</i>, 2013, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i>Jacket Number 19, Winton</i>, <i>Girdle Bone Extraction, Winton</i> and <i> Australia in the Cretaceous, Winton</i>, 2013, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i>Titan (Titanosauriform dinosaur, 95 million years), Winton</i>, <i>Record Keeper, Winton</i> and <i> Gathering, Winton</i>, 2013, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i> Gathering, Winton</i>, 2013, and <i>Mary in Plaster (Titanosauriform dinosaur, 95 million years), Winton</i>, 2014, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i>Wrapping and Casting, Winton</i>, 2013, <i> The Plant People II (Palaeobotanics), Winton</i>, 2014, and <i> Activities in situ</i>, 2013, gilcee prints Elise Hilder, <i>Bone Yard, Winton</i>, 2013, <i>Patrice Site, Winton</i>, and <i>Rocks, Bones and Ute, Winton</i>, 2014, gilcee prints Elise Hilder, <i>Collection Point I, Patrice Site, Lovelle Downs Sheep Station, Winton</i>, 2014, and <i>Collection Point II, Pete Site</i>, 2013, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i>Tyrannosauropus, Dinosaur Stampede National Monument at Lark Quarry Conservation Park</i> and <i>Tyrannosauropus, Dinosaur Stampede National Monument at Lark Quarry Conservation Park</i>, 2014, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i>Vertebrae (Titanosauriform dinosaur), Winton</i> and <i>Sauropod Storage, Winton</i>, 2013, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i>Platypterygius (Ichthyosaur, 105 million years), Richmond</i>, 2013, gilcee print Elise Hilder, <i>Bone Matters, Winton</i>, 2014, gilcee print

The Incomplete Dinosaur: Prehistoric Landscapes of Central West Queensland
Elise Hilder
8th - 11th April

Exploring the past raises many issues for the photographer today, since prehistory, specifically pre-human history, has a somewhat incredible connection to the contemporary physical world. This series of work considers dinosaur imagery that we often do not get to see: the excavation site and surrounding landscape; the human enterprise of digging; and the somewhat abstract fossil forms that litter the worksite.

As an image, the excavation site represents more than just a manmade cavity in the earth where ‘work is done’ and needs to be photographically recorded for the archives. The excavation site is a scientific space, but it often looks less like science and more like a performance, a crowded sandpit, or, at night, another planet. Through the camera lens, these digging spaces become a visual smorgasbord, in which the changing qualities of light, the time of day, the spacing, colours and placement of objects, and the comings and goings of the diggers create a visually rich, contemporary anthropological space. The dinosaur dig is as much a product of present human endeavour as it is of the deep past.

Since 2012, Elise Hilder has been photographing museum collections and dinosaur digs as part of her Ph.D. research at Griffith University. The images have been produced during in-field excavations and museum artist residencies with: Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum of Natural History (Winton); Kronosaurus Korner Museum (Richmond); and Dinosaur Stampede National Monument at Lark Quarry Conservation Park.