Since the late 1970s Jill Orr has been consistently honing an idiosyncratic visual language. The key elements she utilises include time, the primal forces of nature, – especially fire and water– and her own body. The Melbourne-based artist’s vision is cinematic with an intriguing post-human edge; she performs coded narrative actions in the landscape and then creates videos that are more than just records.
“The works are usually site-specific where the site infuses the work with its own environmental, historical, cultural and political overlay. In this way the location becomes a conduit for psycho-social and environmental issues to be expressed,” Orr explains. “As a visual artist I place great effort on creating photographic images and videos as works in their own right, rather than pure documentation.”
In 2015 Orr was honoured with an Australia Council Fellowship. In 2012 she presented her work, The Promised Land, at the inaugural Venice International Performance Art Week. This work featured a structure which resembles a small ship stripped to its skeletal remains. This ghost-like vessel also featured in Orr’s recent work, Dark Night, which was showcased in the 2018 Lorne Sculpture Biennale.