Dan O’Day

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GINGER AND PEARL: TWO LIVES, ONE LOVE

In the beginning we spend so much time and money celebrating the coming together of a relationship but what happens after that? Statistics prove that most don’t make it. But some do.

The older generation are often forgotten but this makes absolutely no sense to me. They should be studied, congratulated, celebrated.

“Two lives, One love – A retrospective”. I want to celebrate those couples who conquered the huge achievement of melding their lives together and going the distance. I want to give them a voice to say “Hey, we made it!”, and for us to say “Congratulations, you are legends”.

Ginger and Pearl have been living in the same house in Canberra, Australia for over 65 years. They grow their own tomatoes, they have an amazing bird aviary and more fridge magnets than I have ever seen before. Ginger and Pearl are from a working class generation. Ginger spends most of his days restoring old wooden furniture and his varnish stained hands tell the story of many a happy piece that has left the shed. He also scored a hat trick many years ago while playing for his local cricket team and he has the trophy to show for it. Pearl is nearly blind but spends her days working in the garden and feeding mince meat to the kookaburras and magpies that sit on her clothesline. Pearl’s love of animals is evident through the picture frame that contains the photographs of all their pets that have passed away over the years.

I cannot begin to fathom the foundation that they have built together  for their family, what they have seen, what they have shared and even, at times, what they have fought for. What I do know however is that I spent a little piece of three separate days with them and I didn’t want to leave.

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DAN O’DAY has held a number of solo exhibitions and has participated in many group shows. His work has been well documented in the press, receiving commendation from the well-respected art critic, Dr Robert Nelson, for his 2008 solo exhibition, “Still II”. In 2009 he was a finalist in the prestigious “Moran Contemporary Photography Prize” for his work, Perfect, and again in 2010 for his work, This Way where he was a recipient of a highly commended award by judge Stephen Dupont.

As a successful commercial photographer, Dan has scooped the professional awards in this arena, having consecutively been a winner for numerous Australian Institute of Professional Photography (AIPP) awards, since 2010, included 2011 AIPP Australian Creative Photographer of the Year.

While building his photography business Dan has remained committed to his art practice, refining techniques and developing on-going themes central to this his work. His last show, “I closed my eyes and saw this” (2012), represents the culmination of a decade’s worth of exploration, both artistically, and literally, and whilst the locations of some of these works may appear specific, Dan’s focus remains universal.

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