Send me a lullaby is a love letter to a city undergoing immense change, created during a period of both urban transformation and global upheaval. Emma Phillips was commissioned by Photo Australia to make a photographic portrait of Melbourne in the lead up to PHOTO 2021 International Festival of Photography. The resulting project – published as the first book in the PHOTO Editions series and launching at PHOTO 2021 – is a reflection on connection, navigation and time, and the constantly evolving relationship between people and place.
Phillips’ photographs contemplate urban, domestic and psychological space. Weaving into this series are portraits of people Phillips has come across in Melbourne, capturing a living, breathing city as it responds to the fallout of bushfires and a pandemic. These disparate photographs taken across different seasons construct a dialogue between some of the city’s component parts – homes, shops, parks, streets – with archaeological objects from beneath the city, offering myriad stories to uncover and tell.