1 – 6. Lifeboats on land (Nos. 1 – 6), 2014, C Type print, 30 x 42 cm each, Latrobe Regional Gallery Collection, purchased 2019.
Pezaloom is an artist whose practice is heavily informed by the Gippsland landscape and his experience living with early-onset Parkinson’s disease. Pezaloom works in the photographic field, capturing the aesthetic of the Latrobe Valley, Gippsland, in which he has spent most of his life. He sees the Latrobe Valley as an essential part of his identity. He uses the aesthetic of this industrial centre as a metaphor for the tension he experiences within his body through his disease. The breakdown of the ‘nerve system of the state’, Pezaloom likens the dissolution of the industry to the simultaneous progression of Parkinson’s disease that impedes his cognitive function.
The artist often looks to desolate, overlooked areas around Gippsland, such as domesticated suburbia and the remains of structures that served as monuments or markers of a community. These landscapes are desolate not because they are barren but because they are uninhabited, retaining only the traces and memories of a stranger.
Pezaloom’s series Lifeboats on land documents a series of run-down caravans that once served as a home. Caravans, designed to move around, are shown in this series as stagnant and fixed. The unkempt nature of the caravans and surrounds records a dissipation of life and the human condition. These ‘lifeboats’ which once provided shelter no longer serve their purpose but are a reminder of the temporality of all life forms.
Pezaloom is an active member of the Gippsland arts scene and is also part of the artist collective Owls of Nebraska. He has had many solo exhibitions across Victoria, including Small Town Fetish at Latrobe Regional Gallery in 2020. Pezaloom’s work is held in the State Library Victoria, The Minister for the Arts of Victoria collection, Latrobe Regional Gallery, and several private collections in Australia.