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Candice Boyd b. 1970, Adelaide, South Australia THE DUSTY EDGE 2020 Digital print on fabric This text montage is composed of selected quotations from interviews conducted by Dr Theresa Harada for the Engaging Youth in Regional Australia study. Fifty young people took part in these interviews who had either chosen to stay in their regional towns, decided (or felt forced) to leave, or left and decided to come back again. The background photograph is of Mel Thurley taken by Jade Bartlem. Mel, herself, was born in a remote town in Australia, moved to the city, and has now moved back to regional Australia. She shared the photograph with the following quotation, which inspired Candice in the making of the montage: "I always thought my parents were kooky for wanting to live in the middle of nowhere. I hated it when I was young. I felt asphyxiated and agoraphobic all at once. It was as though there was a world that was orbiting and pulsing and sparkling, where exciting things were happening, and the kids wore better clothes and knew interesting things. Then there was my world, on the dusty, forgotten edge of the other, better world. Long dirt roads with no streetlights. Strange creatures making strange noises in the deafening silence of the black, black night. The post office that was also the fish and chip shop that was also the video store. It was not a place for me. I kicked off my RM Williams boots and ran as fast as I could, as far as I could from there. And now, I find myself running toward it. My feet can’t carry me quick enough down open, winding roads, through empty, echoing spaces. Oh, the beautiful, aching irony of being proven wrong ... to arrive in the knowing. I am here, and I finally understand. It resonates so deeply; the need to be separate, to be wild, to be on the magnificent, dusty edge of that other, broken world." Candice grew up in a defence force family, travelling to different parts of Australia and the United States in her youth. She holds two PhDs, one in Psychology from Monash University (2000) and the other from the University of Melbourne, jointly awarded by the Victorian College of the Arts and the School of Geography (2016). She is currently an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellow at the University of Melbourne (2019 to 2021) and conducts research within the area of creative geographies.
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