Whilst on a trip to Melbourne in early 2018 I was able to briefly photograph around West Melbourne with Stuart Murdoch in spite of the humidity and the intense heat. I was basically using a digital camera to scope images for an exhibition with Stuart at Atkins Photo Lab in Adelaide during the SALA Festival in South Australia. This festival is around August 2018.
Whilst scoping the area in the railyards the will be transformed by the $11bn Metro underground railway project I recalled that I had photographed in this area of North Melbourne under the Citylink freeway and along the Moonee Ponds Creek with Stuart Murdoch. At the time I couldn't recall what year that was. I just recognised the area, remembered walking around the area, and I recalled some of the images from that documentary photography photo session. When I started to go through the archives upon my return to Adelaide I could see that I had been photographing around this area in 2012.
I also realised that I didn't really know what I was trying to do with this documentary/topographic style of photography in Melbourne. I just filed it under road trips, and then forgot about it, other than conceptualising it as reinventing a documentary style of photography in the 21st century.
This time around I understood that I was photographing the remnants of industrial Melbourne built on the influx of immigrants after the second world war. This was the Melbourne that I knew when I lived and worked there in the 1970s, and it is a Melbourne that is rapidly disappearing. Melbourne had successfully reinvented itself as a post industrial city and I was wandering amongst the left over bits, detritus, or debris of old industrial Melbourne. I was linking with the Melbourne that I knew, rather than the global mega-city that it was fast becoming since its revitalisation in the 1990s.