Treading Water tracks a young woman as she approaches from the sea. We watch as she slowly bobs amongst the waves, beginning as a distant, foreign figure before becoming familiar as she struggles to stay afloat. The young woman is my friend Paung, whose parents immigrated to Australia from Burma as refugees a year before she was born. Treading Water is one face, a representation of the thousands who risk their own and their families’ lives to create a better future on Australian shores.
Treading Water was selected as a finalist in the National Portrait Gallery's Digital Portrait Prize in 2017.