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Videos in the Yeomans Project exhibition


yeomans project exhibition photo by louise anderson

In the above photo, you can see the “Yobarnie Map Wall” at the Yeomans Project exhibition at AGNSW.

There are four digital video screens hung on the wall, amongst a range of photographs taken from PA Yeomans’ books. None of the videos was made by us.

From left to right, these are the videos used in the show:

This is a short clip of “gopro” footage of a Yeomans Keyline Plow in action. It was made by Mark Russell & Nate Mitchell from Adventure Artists, and uploaded by Darren Doherty. I really love how the plow carves up the soil effortlessly, and the lovely metallic sound of it slicing through the turf.

Darren features in the next video as well, which is a kind of pegagogical doco in 5 parts called “Keyline Design at the Beach”. Even though the video is “rough and ready”, I found it gives one of the most tangible explanations of the way that Keyline design works that I’ve come across (compared to say, diagrams in books). The video was made by Jill Clautier and Carol Hirashima from Sustainable World Media:

Next along the wall was a video which directly related to the big maps of Yobarnie. It is called “Yeomans Property Threat from Development – Part 1” and it was made by Gary Caganoff of Lysis Films. The film was made back in 2009, when bits of the iconic Yobarnie began to be sold off for housing developments and a retirement village:

Sadly, much of the battle to save Yobarnie from this banal fate has been lost by now, but there is still a substantial portion that hasn’t yet been built over. We explored these issues on our recent Field Trip to North Richmond, where we met and were introduced to the complex tangle of real estate versus heritage by some of the members of the North Richmond and Districts Community Action Association, NRDCAA.

The final video at the right hand side of the wall was from 1955. It was a “Rural Bank” sponsored film which puts forward PA Yeomans as a heroic man of the land with ideas to save Australia from the drought. It’s a ripper (thanks to the archiving work of Geoffrey Booth for keeping this one alive):

There were a few more videos that we would have liked to include in the show, but we didn’t because they belong to the ABC, which would have charged us upwards of sixty dollars a minute. The strange thing about this is that both of these ABC clips are already freely available on the internet! Go figure.

The ABC videos, which are really quite good, are these:

“Keyline in the Kiewa Valley”:

and a clip from the 7:30 Report which discusses the Yobarnie property development issue:

Here’s a direct link to the TV programme.

5 responses to “Videos in the Yeomans Project exhibition”

  1. Roslyn Yeomans Avatar
    Roslyn Yeomans

    It’s a great treat to see my late’ gramps’ on rare archival footage after so many years. I’m looking forward to more exhibitions and I hope there will be field trips in the future. Thank you to all those responsible for putting it together

    1. Jilly Pascoe Avatar
      Jilly Pascoe

      Hello Roslyn
      I would love to meet with you. Many years ago you brought your father Neville to our Life Force Foundation cancer support group in Annandale. I remember Neville with great affection. He always said the Life Force philosophy was what is needed for aboriginal reconciliation, what it’s all about. Also right now my daughter is finishing her permaculture certificate so I have become very interested in your grandfather’s keyline farming. I know Neville saw patterns and correspondences in everything and his Keyline Culture approach to psychiatry was an extension of PA’s work in the environment it seems. Would love to see you. I think we may have a mutual friend in Nell Schofield? Is that so? Jilly Pascoe

  2. Lucas Ihlein Avatar
    Lucas Ihlein

    Thanks Roslyn – we’ll post here if/when more Field Trips are organised. It’s been great to hear from so many of PA’s relatives recently.

  3. Randall Szott Avatar
    Randall Szott

    I am currently in the 8th day of a ten day workshop with Darren Doherty. It seems like we’re still on very similar tracks!

    1. Lucas Ihlein Avatar
      Lucas Ihlein

      hi Randall
      I’ve been enjoying your diagrams and charts about soil ecology and social ecology. This one in particular. Would love to hear more about your experience at Darren Doherty’s workshop.

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