A multi-generational association with the mining industry has defined Queenstown's identity: our sense of success and prosperity, our way of life and our social fabric. It has also contributed towards a sense of isolationism and self-reliance.
Yet what happens when that dominant force within a community is abruptly removed—as it was when the Mt Lyell mine went into care and maintenance mode in 2014?
The Inevitable Truth explored our community’s identity and relationship with the outside world, contextualised through Queenstown’s extraction of minerals that are exported to India, then processed and sold to a global market.
Thoothukidi, in the Tamil Nadu province of India, is an industrial port city the size of Newcastle (pop. 410,000) which receives Queenstown's copper for smelting. Our community has fundamental yet invisible links Thoothukidi: economically, through defined maritime paths that deliver millions of tonnes of ore across the Indian ocean, environmentally through Thoothukidi now undertaking the mineral processing that inflicted devastation upon the hills of Queenstown.
Working with Tasmanian Artist Selena de Carvalho, The Inevitable Truth aimed to humanise this link by connecting the lives, stories and experiences of people who reside in both places. The project involved youth aged 12–17 in western Tasmania through partnership with Mountain Heights School. The Inevitable Truth aimed to increase knowledge of Queenstown’s place within a global industrial system, and build understanding of people from other ethnicities and cultures to which we are fundamentally linked.