Remnant: The Tragedy of Lost Significance | Christopher Rimmer

As the pandemic set in globally, South African based photographer Christopher Rimmer was compelled back to Australia. Unable to leave, he started searching inland for the inspiration for his next series, travelling far and wide across the varied, striking and at times, foreboding Australian landscape.

'Remnant: The Tragedy of Lost Significance' is the aftermath of these travels. In twenty-one images, Rimmer tells a complex story about the environment, isolation and failed ambition. There are portraits of abandoned soldier resettlements, mysterious sculptures stark against orange desert and debris from the doomed old Ghan Railway, a hubristic attempt to thread the north and south of Australia. In these traces of expired plans, Rimmer finds a warning to balance the drive towards progress with care for the environment and its inhabitants.

“There is a very romantic history of the photographer on the road in search of subject matter and I wanted to be that guy,” reflects Rimmer. In reality however, descending into the outback carries risk – “there is no margin for error and a simple mistake can cost you dearly, sometimes with your life.” 

The Australian outback has long threatened and seduced explorers. In its sheer vastness lie forgotten stories, attempts to build lives that faltered beneath extreme weather conditions. One day, Rimmer happened across a campsite with emptied beers, untouched since the 1930s. He saw the impression of a fallen meteor, space junk and Aboriginal tools, traces of phenomena and civilisation frozen in time. 

An award-winning photographer, Remnant represents Rimmer’s sixth body of work. It continues and expands the tradition of Australian landscape art, finding new horizons in deserts of dreams.

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