Janina Green – Be Home Before Dark

Words – Julia Howland

Photos – Andy Donohoe

Janina Green – Be Home Before Dark at Colour Factory Gallery, 409 – 429 Gore Street, Fitzroy, until July 28th

Solemn, scattered foliage lines the walls of the Colour Factory for Janina Green’s exhibition. The cold and rainy Melbourne air lends a great dimension to the icy feel of Green’s photos, most of which have a chilled blue and grey complexion. With wandering leaves and almost human like appearance I shuffled through the packed gallery as to capture each photo in its entirety. The theme of nature is abundantly clear, but theres something more, something unsettling about each naturalistic print. As if nature mother nature herself is telling a story through her intricate weaving and subtle gestures, you are then suddenly and without notice thrust into confrontation with her brilliant depiction of farm life. Theres a humanistic presence through the prints and for some reason nothing establishes this more than a cow, standing in a forgotten field, staring down at you with judgment. You feel a sense of a forgotten world and this cynical bovine creates remorse: Was it something I did?

The elegant beauty is perfectly intertwined with an underlying theme of nature and the deteriorating world around us. We see ourselves in the aging bark, the solitary tree who is every so slightly misshapen, the endless road, and the tangled leaves. These images reflect the very essence of humanity and how close we are to our natural environment.