Melbourne, Flinders Street Homeless Camp. Asha spends hours sitting and smoking cigarettes, sometimes laced with marijuana. “I use the paranoia as a defence mechanism. You know, it helps if ever I feel like someone is going to touch my stuff, the paranoia kicks in."
Flinders Street, Melbourne, Australia. Asha Lang sits eating a meal given to him by a member of the public while another homeless man and Asha's 'neighbour' smokes ice through a crack-pipe behind him in full public view on the streets of Melbourne."I can deal with the Crack, Ice and Weed but the booze; thats where the real evil lies."
Flinders Street, Melbourne, Australia. Asha Lang is seen sleeping in Melbournes streets. After having his belongings stolen and relinquishing his spot in the homeless camp on Flinders Asha is forced to sleep at Melbournes' busiest intersection; Flinders and Swanston. "Iv'e had enough, enough of lugging my stuff every day."
Flinders Street, Melbourne, Australia. Asha Lang is seen speaking to a family member for the first time in 13 years. "At some point every day they [relatives] would be brought up in my emotions, and now I’ve got text messages and a photo of my great-granddaughters first day of school. It’s overwhelming.”
Melbourne, Swanston Street. Recognised on the streets as a voice for his peers, Asha organised a snap protest during the Australian Tennis Open protesting the media, Lord Mayor's office and police treatment of Melbournes homeless. "We live as a microcosm of society. We have neighbours’ and we have arguments with our neighbours. It’s just that ours are for all to see. We used to be called the invisible ones.”
Lonsdale Street, Melbourne, Australia. Asha Lang is seen under fairy lights on Lonsdale Street, Melbourne. Asha spends most nights, particularly in summer, wandering the city of Melbourne. Always looking for cigarette butts but mostly to 'feel' the city. For most homeless sleeping rough, a sense of place is akin to the general publics having a 'home'."I feel the hum of the city. I can separate the sounds from its physical being."
Russell Street, Melbourne, Australia. Asha Lang is seen weaving through oncoming traffic in Melbournes Central Business District (CBD). On Asha's city wanderings he never pushes the buttons at intersections, dodging cars as they drive past. "Why should the world come to a halt for me?"
Southbank, Melbourne, Australia. Asha Lang is seen staring at a street lamp as cyclists ride by in an underpass. “A friend of my fathers stood above me and asked what I wanted to do when I grew up. I looked up at him, saw the light of his cigarette and said – a drifter. I don’t know why.”
Sturt Street, Melbourne. Escaping the increased drug related violence and theft at the Flinders Street camp, Asha slept in solitude in this location between two busy carriageways and underneath a footbridge in his last month on the street. "Its a quiet spot and Ive got a front garden." he says sarcastically.
Sturt St, Melbourne, Australia. Asha rolls out his blankets in the secret sleeping quarters he has found for himself beneath a pedestrian bridge and between two busy carriageways. "Im tired, I have had enough. My body doesn’t handle it no more."
Sturt Street, Melbourne. Now isolated from the homeless community Asha enjoys his time alone and finds the relative calm of his new 'home' a relief. “When a child is abused he will seek solace anywhere, anyhow. I felt worthless, because that’s what I was taught to think about myself. It made me vulnerable to predators."
Healsville, Australia. Asha Lang is seen reading pages of the Bible in his government provided accomodation."I do believe there is a god. I find some of the bibles passages I can relate to." Asha explains his thoughts on religion from the bedroom of his newly allocated home in rural Victoria. he now looks to the future with positivity, “I could stay here the rest of my life, and that’s a good thing ‘cos I have had enough. My body doesn’t handle it no more. It’s my turn to have something in my life."
Healsville, Australia. Asha Langs' Bible sits on a floor in an empty room in his government provided accomodation."I do believe there is a god. I find some of the bibles passages I can relate to."