Skip to content Skip to footer

Зубакин (Means Zubakin in Russian alphabet) by Ruby Gilleland

Зубакин (Means Zubakin in Russian alphabet)

Ruby Gilleland

About the work

Born in Marrickville to half Russian/Irish and Welsh parents, I landed in Brisbane at the age of 18 months. Our family ventured north to be closer to my Russian-born grandparents who immigrated to Brisbane in the 50s. The family surname was Zubaki but was altered to Zubakin to assist with our assimilation into our new surrounds.

These rich cultural ties provided me with the stimulus to create a highly metaphorical self-portrait that reflects the intensely complex fabric of my ethnographic ties. This was initiated with the construction of a small hand sewn patch work bear that reflects various symbolic materials such as tartan and hardened woollen fabrics that express a sense of nostalgia. The deliberate fragmentation and deconstruction express the gradual breakdown of these elements as I find my own cultural distinctiveness. As an avid photographer, I like to look for unusual and unconventional vehicles of expression. This provokes the viewer to do more than just glance. I believe reflection is an integral part of the aesthetic process.