Digital photograph of melted alloy from the Victorian bushfires of 2009.

Mike Emmett is a professional photographer who lives and works in the Yarra Valley. On Black Saturday, 7 February 2009, and for several days after, he defended his home from bushfire. Mike took this photo of a bushfire-affected object as part of an exhibition called 'Resurrected: Objects, Memories, Stories' which ran from 28 March to 30 May 2009 at Three Stories Artspace in Healesville. His brief for the exhibition was to look for beauty in the wake of the Black Saturday bushfires in February 2009. More than a documentation process, his photographs are artworks in their own right. The puddle of aluminium alloy that is the subject of the photograph is all that remains of an aluminium ladder from a Yarra Glen house that burned on 7 February 2009.

Description of Content

View of a hardened pool of Melted Alloy from above which was created during the Victorian bushfires of 2009.

Physical Description

Digital file


These photographs of bushfire objects are stunning works of art but it is what they reveal of personal experience that make them significant historical documents. Many people, having fought and survived a bushfire, would see only death and destruction in these objects. Mike Emmett, by creating images that instead reveal their beauty, is refuting the conventional definition of 'bushfire victim' and extracting new meaning from both the burned object and his own history.

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