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Captured on film – Migration As Art

25/June/2021
Migration as Art: The painting created by Stephen Copland specifically for the Italian Festival was on show with a collection of historical photographs on the history of cane cutting in the region.

To highlight the inspirational and educational work that Australian Artist, Stephen Copland, is doing, Italian filmmaker, Davide Celoria, crafted a film to highlight the uniqueness of his project, ‘Migration As Art’. The film tells the story of Stephen Copland’s development of the ‘Migration As Art’ project and museum in Conzano and was recently screened at the Italian Festival Gala Dinner. The oil on canvas painting ‘Flag’ was exhibited at TYTO gallery along with a collection of historical photographs on the history of cane cutting in the region over previous weeks.

Earlier this year, Mr Celoria, from Vercelli, set out to the hilltop town of Conzano to capture film footage for a short film he was making about the future Migration As Art Museum in Conzano. The film, destined for screening at the annual Italian Festival in Ingham, drew attention to the connected towns on opposite sides of the world. Conzano has been named ‘the land of the Australians’ due to its legacy of migration to North Queensland.

Drone footage from Mr Celoria captured stunning aerial vistas of the verdant patchwork of the agricultural landscape around the hilltop town of Conzano. On the ground, Emanuele Demaria, Mayor of Conzano, spoke of the history of emigration and the pride of hosting the museum there. Artist, Albina Dealessi, shared her enthusiasm and anticipation for the art project, its contextual relevance, and the artistic benefit such a cultural initiative would bring to the town, and to wider audiences. 

The success of the Celoria film and Migration As Art project has resulted in an invitation for Copland to present at upcoming Migration conferences in Luxembourg and London this year.

Davide Celoria’s film will be a great historic document for the Hinchinbrook Shire as well as Queensland, to promote the ‘international’ aspects of the region and, specifically, the twin town relationship between Conzano and Ingham. The film will also be shown in the historic Villa Vidua, Conzano. In September, it will be screened in conjunction with the inauguration of the naming of the new ‘Museum Square’ in Conzano. The Migration As Art designated exhibition space will be devoted to showcasing artwork about migration in its many and varied forms created by Australian Artist, Stephen Copland, over a thirty-year period. 

As international travel remains uncertain, Meredith and Stephen, who are in Australia, are working with the Commune and friends in Conzano. Initial renovation works commence with the re-roofing of the museum building, then raising funds will continue to develop the Migration As Art Museum. 

For enquiries, more information, or potential sponsorship opportunities, please contact Stephen Copland at migrationasartmuseum@gmail.com

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