This image is of Sarah Parker and Gemma Monk at Tatura taken by Tagen Baker on 11 August 2016 as part of The Invisible Farmer Project.
This particular image shows Sarah Parker and Gemma Monk standing against a brick wall, holding their mobile phones. The mobile phone was the special item of value that both women chose to highlight during their interviews.
Originally from Queensland, Sarah Parker learned all she knows about dairy farming from hands-on experience and her husband Brian. Together, the couple now co-own a successful dairy farm in Victoria called Glencliffe. With 140 acres of irrigated property, they farm approximately 110-130 cows that supply milk to a boutique Italian cheese company.
Gemma Monk and her husband co-own a large dairy farm in Victoria where they care for approximately 750 cows.
Both Sarah and Gemma speak passionately about climate change, irrigation and farming practices, the modern-day dairy crisis, and the importance of community support and connectivity within the farming industry.
The Invisible Farmer Project was the largest ever study of Australian women on the land, uncovering the histories and stories of Australian women in agriculture. It began as a pilot project (2015-2016) and evolved into a three year (2017-2020) nation-wide partnership between rural communities, academic, government and cultural organisations, funded by the Australian Research Council.
Description of Content
Two women standing against a brick wall holding their mobile phones.
Digital colour photograph
As a visiting research associate for Museum Victoria, and a PhD student in Utah State University's Department of Environment and Society, Tagen Baker had the opportunity to explore the diverse landscape of Victoria and interview and photograph women farmers as part of The Invisible Farmer Project-to learn from them about their histories, responses to climate change, and how they adapted their agricultural practices to sustain themselves and their families. Tagen wanted to know how their experiences have been similar or different to women in her home state of Idaho, USA. How have women been key agents of change embedded in their environments? How do women farmers provide unique perspectives and contributions to the futures of agriculture and to their communities?
As part of her research process, Tagen asked several women farmers if she could photograph them with an item of value. This item opened up a unique opportunity to communicate and learn about the farmers' lives. The item chosen was not only symbolic as a physical item of value, tangible and necessary, but a portal into a storytelling journey, a symbol of their rich and unique life experiences.
Digital Still Image, Colour
Type of item
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