Collection Online
pigment, synthetic string, stringy bark, twine on canvas
180.0 × 136.0 cm
Place/s of Execution
Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand
Accession Number
Indigenous Art
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Purchased, 1999
© Judy Watson/Licensed by VISCOPY, Australia
This digital record has been made available on NGV Collection Online through the generous support of The Vizard Foundation
Gallery location
Not on display
Judy Watson created driftnet during a residency in Christchurch, New Zealand. The work evokes the passage of water, the Pacific Ocean that connects and separates Australia and Aotearoa (New Zealand). It refers to destructive netting and fishing practices, which entrap and kill turtles, dolphins and other marine creatures indiscriminately. It also alludes to a spirit net, a catcher of thoughts that holds threads of cultural knowledge in its weave. The twined and woven stringybark fragment forms a tangible yet incomplete net that stretches across the cobalt-blue watery expanse, evoking notions of fluidity and visceral connections between cultures.