The Killing Sink

Matt Dunne

2019 - Ongoing


Despite the image of Australia as home to unique and wonderful animals, it has the some of the worst rates of extinction in the world. Since colonialisation, 90 Australian species have gone extinct, with Australia losing more biodiversity in the last 200 years than any other nation on Earth. This is almost always a product of the conflict between the habitat needs of animals and the commercial choices of post-colonial settlement.

Even in cases where species are legally protected by the government, there exists a portion of Australians who still hunt, poison, trap and kill those animals for out-dated or unspoken reasons. ‘The Killing Sink’ is a photographic project that explores the ongoing deliberate killing of one such species: the Wedge-Tailed Eagle. Starting from the case of two men, who in 2017 aroused substantial public interest when they were trialled for the killing of over 400 eagles, the project ties together animals, intention, psychology and history.

In this project, I work to bear witness to the illegal destruction of wildlife by visually investigating places where Eagles have been killed, the animals themselves and the tools of their destruction. Text, too, is an important element, underlining the mindsets, history and consequences of senseless violence. The project seeks to hold us all accountable for the ways other forms of life are sidelined and forced to suffer through humanity’s outdated thinking and latent violence.

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  • 1 Eagle killed here

  • 1 eagle shot here

  • 400 Eagles kill here

  • 130 Eagles killed here