You are in site section: Online features

Brooke Lenon

Brooke Lenon

Artist biography

A black and white photograph of a young white woman. She is visible from the shoulders up. She has long dark hair and wears a pair of sunglasses on the top of her head. Her head is slightly inclined to the left of the photo. She smiles at the camera. In the left background of the photo is a container that holds a pair of scissors and a small brush. The photo appears to have been taken in a photogaphic or art studio.

Brooke Lenon is currently in her second year of a Bachelor of Visual Arts (Photo Media) at the Australian National University School of Art.

She grew up in southern NSW and is interested in exploring ideas around Australian identity, culture and history.

Artist statement

This work asks the viewer to explore the divide between the young men who served with Australian forces in the First World War and the young, Australian men of today.

I began exploring this idea through my own family archive by thinking about the parallels between my brothers, and my great uncles, who both enlisted in the Australian Imperial Forces in the First World War.

My uncle George was wounded in Gallipoli at age 23, returned to Australia to re-enlist and was then deployed to Egypt with the 12th Light Horse.

My uncle Frank set out for the Western Front with the 20th Battalion and was killed in action on 27 March 1917, aged 19.

The First World War seems like an eternity ago to the youth of today. But the very real truth is that a few short generations ago thousands of young Australians were sent to their deaths on the other side of the world, yet we see them as old men who are far removed from today's world, relics of the past.

They were not old soldiers but young men whose ideas of masculinity, patriotism and youth may have not differed greatly from the ideas of today's young Australians.

Artist work

Title: Short Days Ago

Medium: Photographic Installation
Dimension: 4m x 2.5m
Date: May 2009

A colour photograph of an artwork. The artwork is made up of 126 tags hung on a wall. The tags are arranged in rows of 18. There are seven rows in total. Each tag has text or an image on it. The wall is white in colour.

Artist inspiration

Eyemo motion picture camera used by Damien Parer and the film Kokoda Front Line!

The Second World War arrived on Australia's doorstep in July 1942. Japanese forces advanced across the island of New Guinea to the north of Australia, and Australian soldiers rushed to meet them on the steep, forested slopes of the Owen Stanley Ranges. Australian cameraman Damien Parer accompanied the 21st Brigade to New Guinea where he filmed the troops' gruelling trek along the Kokoda Trail.

His film, Kokoda Front Line!, brought the campaign home to Australian audiences. This Eyemo camera is believed to be one of several he used to make the award-winning documentary.

A black-coloured metal motion picture camera with three-lens turret, clockwork-driven film cartridge and side viewfinder. A black pistol-style handgrip extends beneath the camera body.
An Eyemo motion picture camera used by Damien Parer.
Photo: Lannon Harley.