Performance Contemporary —
Performance Contemporary 2023 curated by Samantha Watson-Wood of Friends With Strangers presented a diverse program of experimental and ephemeral performance works by some of Sydney’s most exciting contemporary artists. The artists used the body as a medium to explore key social, cultural and political ideas.
Watson-Wood states: “This year’s Performance Contemporary explores the relationship between the body and place. Through play, projection, song and dance, these artists use the incredible architecture of Carriageworks as a starting point to guide both the audience and the performer through time and space.”
A conductor is an object or type of material that allows the flow of charge in one or more directions.
In this performance, choreographer and performer Riana Head-Toussaint explores and interacts with the space’s social and architectural conditions; collecting, reflecting and refracting these charged dimensions through movement and live sound production.
Her embodied presence in dialogue with various apparatus becomes a catalyst for reflection on the potential energy built during the interaction between our bodies and structures – expansive and transmutable.
Red Tape, 2023
Amala Groom is a Wiradyuri conceptual arts and cultural practitioner who employs a Wiradyuri-based ontology and embodied research-based methodology that considers traditional cultural practice and academia with formal research as a whole-of-person approach as both inquiry and investigation in the actual and literal sense. For Performance Contemporary, Groom will present her durational work RED TAPE, where Groom corporeally negotiates the bureaucracy of the imposition of third-dimensional reality on her spiritual and physical bodies by singing a song in Wiradyuri, wrapping herself in 44 rolls of red electrical tape and then jumping through a hoop.
Spectrum In Volume, 2023
Multidisciplinary artist and fierce trans woman Fetu Taku uses her extensive hip hop and vogue training to create work that pushes boundaries of the body and the space it inhabits. Through bespoke sound design and choreography Fetu’s hypnotic works take viewers on explorations of culture, time and place. Taku choreographs movement in reference to space and time, working with sound and architecture using the body as a place of reverence for deep mental and physical training. In a newly commissioned work taking place during Art Night, Fetu will fuse elements of her practice together into a piece that explores community, and equitable spaces for diverse bodies.
Cook Island-Australian artist Morgan Hogg draws from her Kūki Airani heritage to represent her exploration of cultural displacement and identity. Making space within her practice to rely on oral exchange between her mother and family, Hogg continues the story of her ancestry through maintaining traditional practices within her works. Morgan Hogg uses performative gestures to demonstrate the warmth of community, ancestors and spirit wherever she performs and for her performance at Sydney Contemporary the artist will create an expressive, costumed dance taking the viewer on a journey through time and space, embracing the culture and places we come from and bringing them together in a shared space. In engaging with performance and installation, she creates spaces of belonging within her institutionalised upbringing in Australia.