Personal stories, reflections and photographic portraits of young people from Kinglake and police officers who experienced the 2009 Victorian bushfires feature in the Victoria Police Museum’s latest exhibition.
Things of Fire and Ash: Remembered opens to the public tomorrow (Thursday 7 February).
Through written personal reflections and portraits by acclaimed photographer Lilli Waters, the new exhibition celebrates the courage and resilience of these people 10 years after the 2009 Victorian bushfires.
During 2013, 11 young people from Kinglake worked with the Victoria Police Museum, Wominjeka Kinglake youth group leader Lesley Bebbington and photographer Lilli Waters to produce an exhibition about the 2009 bushfires.
In 2019, six of the young people have returned to share their stories with the Victoria Police Museum, demonstrating their journey and how their lives have changed and grown.
Photographer Lilli Waters said it has been an extraordinary experience to be invited back to photograph portraits of these kids five years later.
“Now as young adults, seeing them grown and matured, and rebuilding their lives after such a loss,” Ms Waters said.
“I also photographed some of the police officers and found their stories of humble courage very moving.”
Things of Fire and Ash: Remembered also features four Victoria Police officers who went above and beyond to protect the community and provide support and care to those impacted by the bushfires.
“We wanted the exhibition to reflect individuals’ stories and journeys, so we asked our participants to write about what the 10 year anniversary means to them,” said Museum Curator, Amber Evangelista.
“We were blown away by what they produced – their reflections show extraordinary creativity, strength and compassion.
The exhibition is a demonstration of the incredible resilience, growth and courage of our state and the police that serve it.”
Things of Fire and Ash, Remembered will be open to the general public from Thursday 7 February and throughout 2019 at the Victoria Police Museum, mezzanine level, 637 Flinders Street (entrance via Siddeley Street).
Opening hours are 10am – 4pm Monday to Friday (closed public holidays). For more information visit www.policemuseum.vic.gov.au.