This digital photograph depicts Elaine Teo at work at her dry cleaning business during the State of Victoria's first COVID-19 lockdowns and associated 'stay at home' restrictions. Elaine is pictured standing behind the counter to her retail shopfront, which is located on Station Street in Fairfield, Victoria.

At the time this photograph was taken, Elaine was running this dry cleaning business, N & S Happy Dry Cleaners, alongside her brother Robert. This family-owned business had been in Fairfield for 20 years, and Elaine and Robert had taken it over from their parents 13 years prior.

In June 2020, Elaine reflected: 'COVID-19 meant that we closed the store, but we have recently been able to open just 2 days per week. We miss our customers and we look forward to when this is all over so we can return to normal work again.'

This photograph was taken by Melbourne-based photographer Julie Ewing as part of her 'Across the Fence' photographic series. This series documents life in Melbourne's Darebin region during the first COVID-19 lockdowns that began in Victoria on 14 March 2020. Julie photographed 120 households and 60 businesses during March to May 2020, and this digital photograph is one of 24 images that were acquired into Museum Victoria's Collecting the Curve Collection. These photographs provide a lasting reminder of how neighbourhoods and households in Melbourne were impacted by the COVID-19 global pandemic, as well as the unique ways through which individuals and communities adapted their lives and found new routines, traditions and ways of supporting one another.

Physical Description

Digital TIFF file

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