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Index

Content Types

Artist Profiles (3)

Audio (4)

Audio Papers (37)

Editorial (3)

Essays (29)

Conversations (9)

Scores (8)

Series (9)

Text Poems (8)

Contributors (125)

  • Allanah Stewart
  • Allanah Stewart is an artist from Aotearoa/New Zealand, currently living in Melbourne, Australia. As well as her work in various experimental music projects, she is the presenter of a monthly podcast radio programme called Enquiring Minds, hosted by Noods radio, which explores old and new, lesser known and well known sounds that loosely fit under the banner of experimental music.

  • Jen Callaway
  • Jen Callaway is a Melbourne musician, sound and performance artist, photographer, and community services worker raised in various parts of Tasmania. Current projects include bands Is There a Hotline?, Propolis, Snacks and Hi God People; and upcoming film Here at the End, by Campbell Walker, as actor/co-writer.

  • Isha Ram Das
  • Isha Ram Das is a composer and sound artist primarily concerned with ecologies of environment and culture. He works with experimental sound techniques to produce performances, installations and recordings. He was the 2019 recipient of the Lionel Gell Award for Composition, and has scored feature-length films and nationally-touring theatre installations. He has performed at institutions such as the Sydney Opera House; Black Dot Gallery, Melbourne; Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane; Metro Arts, Brisbane; Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney; and Boxcopy, Brisbane.

  • Dylan Robinson
  • Dylan Robinson is a xwélméxw (Stó:lō) writer, artist, scholar and curator, He is Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Arts, and associate professor at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. He is author of Hungry Listening, Resonant Theory for Indigenous Sound Studies, published by University of Minnesota Press.

  • Megan Cope
  • Megan Cope is a Quandamooka woman (North Stradbroke Island) in South East Queensland. Her site-specific sculptural installations, video work and paintings investigate issues relating to identity, the environment and mapping practices. Cope’s work often resists prescribed notions of Aboriginality and becomes psychogeographies across various material outcomes that challenge the grand narrative of ‘Australia’ as well as our sense of time and ownership in a settler colonial state.

  • Sean Baxter
  • Australian musician Sean Baxter died on 15 March 2020. Part of Melbourne's improv scene, he is described by musician Anthony Pateras as possessing “a unique aesthetic vision and intellectual depth, mixing highbrow philosophical concepts with punk sensibilities in how he lived, spoke and played. He was pure energy.”

    Drumkit and percussionist, Sean was an Australian improviser who forged an international reputation as a bold explorer of percussive possibilities both as a soloist and through his work with the acclaimed avant-garde trio, Pateras/Baxter/Brown. Focusing on the use of extended techniques applied to the conventional drum kit, he utilised an arsenal of metallic junk and other percussive detritus to expand the sonic palette of the percussion tradition. In addition to Pateras/Baxter/Brown, he was involved in many collaborations and was drummer for groups The Throwaways, Bucketrider, Lazy, SxSxSx and Terminal Hz.

  • Thomas Ragnar
  • Thomas Ragnar is an artist based in Singapore. His work is often underpinned by collaborations, affinities and research with experiential methodologies.

  • Alessandro Bosetti
  • Alessandro Bosetti is an Italian composer, performer and sound artist, currently based in Marseille. His work delves into the musicality of spoken language, utilising misunderstandings, translations and interviews as compositional tools. His works for voice and electronics blur the line between electro-acoustic composition, aural writing and performance.

  • Lin Chi-Wei
  • Lin Chi-Wei is a legend of Taiwanese sonic art, whose practice incorporates folklore culture, noise, ritual, and audience participation.

  • Mat Dryhurst
  • Mat Dryhurst is an artist who releases music and artworks solo and in conjunction with Holly Herndon and the record label PAN. Dryhurst developed the decentralised publishing framework Saga, which enables creators to claim ownership of each space in which their work appears online, and a number of audio plays that derive their narrative from the personal information of listeners. He lectures on issues of music, technology, and ideology at NYU, and advises the blockchain-based platform co-operative Resonate.is.

  • Sean Dockray
  • Sean Dockray is an artist, writer, and programmer living in Melbourne whose work explores the politics of technology, with a particular emphasis on artificial intelligences and the algorithmic web. He is also the founding director of the Los Angeles non-profit Telic Arts Exchange, and initiator of knowledge-sharing platforms, The Public School and Aaaaarg.

  • Emile Frankel
  • Author of Hearing the Cloud (Zero Books), Emile Frankel is a writer and composer researching the changing conditions of online listening. In his spare time he runs the Sci-Fi and critical fantasy publisher Formling.

  • Bridget Chappell
  • Bridget Chappell is a raver and theory bro currently living on the unceded nations of the Latji Latji and Nyeri Nyeri people. They make music as Hextape and organise parties in drains, observatories, and other natural amphitheatres. They founded and run Sound School, work with young musicians behind bars, and make experimental sound technologies to challenge police sirens.

  • Holly Herndon
  • Holly Herndon experiments at the outer reaches of dance music and pop. Born in Tennessee, Herndon spent her formative years in Berlin’s techno scene and repatriated to San Francisco, where she completed her PhD at Stanford’s Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics. Her albums include Platform (2015) and Proto (2019).

  • Candice Hopkins
  • Candice Hopkins is a curator, writer and researcher interested in history, art and indigeneity, and their intersections. Originally from Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, Hopkins is a citizen of Carcross/Tagish First Nation. She was senior curator for the 2019 Toronto Biennial of Art, and worked on the curatorial teams for the Canadian Pavilion at the 58th Venice Biennale, and documenta 14.

  • Raven Chacon
  • Raven Chacon is a composer, performer and artist from Fort Defiance, Navajo Nation. His work ranges from chamber music to experimental noise, to large scale installations, produced solo and with the Indigenous art collective Postcommodity. At California Institute of the Arts, Chacon studied with James Tenney, Morton Subotnick, Michael Pisaro and Wadada Leo Smith developing a compositional language steeped in both the modernist avant-garde and Indigenous cosmologies and subjectivities. He has written for ensembles, musicians and non-musicians, and for social and educational situations, and toured the world as a noise artist.

  • Lisa Lerkenfeldt
  • Lisa Lerkenfeldt is a multi-disciplinary artist working in sound, gesture and performance. Central to her practice is languages of improvisation and intimacy with technology. Traces of a personal discipline and form of graphic notation are introduced in the online exhibition 14 Gestures. The associated recorded work Collagen (Shelter Press, 2020) disrupts the role of the common hair comb through gesture and sound.

  • Haroon Mirza
  • Haroon Mirza is an artist who intertwines his practice with the role of composer. Mirza considers electricity his main medium and creates atmospheric environments through the linking together of light, sound, music, videos and elements of architecture. Regularly showing internationally in group and solo exhibitions, Mirza’s work has also been included in the 7th Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale, China (2012) and the 54th Venice Biennale, Italy (2011), where he was awarded the Silver Lion.

  • 33EMYBW
  • Shanghai native 33EMYBW (Wu Shanmin) has been an active member in the Chinese music scene for over a decade. She has also performed at CTM and Sinotronics in Germany, China Drifting Festival in Switzerland, and SXSW. Her 2018 album Golem, released on SVBKVLT, was met with critical acclaim and voted one of the best electronic albums of 2018 by Bandcamp. In 2019 she released DONG2 EP under Merrie Records Beijing, and will premiere her sophomore album Arthropods (SVBKVLT) at Unsound 2019.

  • Alexander Garsden
  • Alexander Garsden is a Melbourne-based composer, guitarist and electroacoustic musician, working across multiple exploratory musical disciplines. Recent work includes commissions from the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Speak Percussion, Michael Kieran Harvey and Eugene Ughetti; alongside performances with artists including Tetuzi Akiyama (Japan), Oren Ambarchi, Radu Malfatti (Austria), Julia Reidy, David Stackenäs (Sweden), and with Erkki Veltheim and Rohan Drape. From 2014 to 2019 Garsden was Co-Director of the INLAND Concert Series. He has taught through RMIT University and the University of Melbourne.

  • Annika Kristensen
  • Annika Kristensen is Senior Curator at the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne.

  • Arben Dzika
  • Arben Dzika is an artist whose practice involves working with various media including, but not limited to: sound, image, word, and performance. His work primarily seeks to reflect on, interrogate, and play with technologies, systems, and human senses. Within his practice, he works as a producer and DJ under the moniker, Dilae.

  • Audrey Schmidt
  • Audrey Schmidt is a writer and editor based in Melbourne, Australia. She is a regular contributor to Memo Review, co-editor the third issue of Dissect Journal, and has written for various publications including Art Monthly, Art + Australia and un Magazine. She co-founded Minority Report with Adam Hammad in 2018 and released one online issue that was available until the domain expired in 2019. Audrey sits on the FYTA (GR) Board of Advisors.

  • Autumn Royal
  • Autumn Royal is a poet, researcher, and educator based in Narrm/Melbourne. Autumn’s current research examines elegiac expression in contemporary poetry. Autumn is the interviews editor for Cordite Poetry Review, and author of the poetry collections She Woke & Rose (Cordite Books, 2016) and Liquidation (Incendium Radical Library, 2019).

  • Bianca Winataputri
  • Bianca Winataputri is a Melbourne-based independent curator and writer researching contemporary practice in Southeast Asia, and relationships between individuals and collectives in relation to history, globalisation, identity and community building. Currently working at Regional Arts Victoria, Bianca was previously Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art at the NGA. She holds a BA (University of Melbourne), and BA Honours from the ANU where she received the Janet Wilkie Prize for Art. In 2018 Bianca was selected for 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art’s Curators’ Intensive.

  • Brian Hioe
  • Brian Hioe was one of the founding editors of New Bloom, an online magazine covering activism and youth politics in Taiwan and the Asia Pacific, founded in 2014 in the wake of the Sunflower Movement. Hioe is a freelance writer on social movements and politics, as well as an occasional translator.

  • Chi Tran
  • Chi Tran is a writer, editor, and an artist who makes poems that may be text, video, object, sound, or drawing. Chi is primarily interested in working with language as a means of coming-to-terms. Their work has been published by Incendium Radical Library Press, Cordite Poetry Review, Australian Poetry and Liminal Magazine and exhibited at galleries including Firstdraft, Sydney; Punk Café, Melbourne; and ACCA, Melbourne. In 2019, as a recipient of The Ian Potter Cultural Trust Fund, Chi spent three months in New York developing their practice with renowned poets including Mei-mei Berssenbrugge, Fred Moten, and Jackie Wang.

  • Chun Yin Rainbow Chan
  • Chun Yin Rainbow Chan is a Hong Kong–Australian artist, living in Sydney. Working across music, performance and installation, Rainbow is interested in the copy and how the ways in which it can disrupt Western notions of ownership. Central to Rainbow's work is the circulation of knock-off objects, sounds and images in global media. Her work positions the counterfeit as a complex sign that shapes new myths, values and contemporary commodity production.

  • Dale Gorfinkel
  • Dale Gorfinkel is a musician-artist whose stylefree improvisational approach informs his performances, instrument-building, and kinetic sound installations. Aiming to reflect an awareness of the dynamic nature of culture and the value of listening as a mode of knowing people and places, Dale is interested in bringing creative communities together and shifting perceived boundaries. Current projects include Prophets, Sounds Like Movement, and Music Yared as well as facilitating Art Day South, an inclusive arts studio with Arts Access Victoria.

  • Danni Zuvela
  • Danni Zuvela is a curator and writer based in Melbourne and the Gold Coast. Her research is informed by interests in feminism, activism, ecology, language and performance. With Joel Stern, Danni has led Liquid Architecture as Artistic Director, and continues to develop curatorial projects for the organisation.

  • Eric Avery
  • Eric Avery is a Ngiyampaa, Yuin, Bandjalang and Gumbangirr artist. As part of his practice Eric plays the violin, dances and composes music. Working with his family’s custodial songs he seeks to revive and continue on an age old legacy – continuing the tradition of singing in his tribe – utilising his talents to combine and create an experience of his peoples culture.

  • Fjorn Butler
  • Fjorn Butler is an artist, researcher, and event organiser. As an artist, she works primarily in sound and performance under the name Papaphilia. As a researcher, she interrogates how biological discourses are used in neoliberal/colonial governance structures to shape the political. Fjorn's research informs her writing on sound-poetics and the challenges this framework poses to anglophone notions of property. She is also co-director of Future Tense and co-curator of Writing and Concepts.

  • Freya Schack-Arnott
  • Freya Schack-Arnott is an Australian/Danish cellist who enjoys a multi-faceted career as a soloist and ensemble performer of classical and contemporary repertoire, curator and improviser within experimental music, electronics, popular and cross-disciplinary art forms. Schack-Arnott regularly performs with Australia's leading new music ensembles, including ELISION Ensemble (as core member) and Ensemble Offspring. Her curatorial roles include co-curator/founder of the regular 'Opus Now' music series and previous curator of the NOW Now festival and Rosenberg Museum.

  • Gooooose
  • Gooooose (Han Han) is an electronic music producer, visual artist and software developer based in Shanghai, China. His current releases include They (D Force, 2017), Dong 1 (D Force, 2018), Pro Rata (ANTE-RASA, 2019). Gooooose's 2019 SVBKVLT–released RUSTED SILICON received positive reviews from media including boomkat, Resident Advisor, Dusted Magazine, and The Wire. Gooooose has performed live at CTM (Berlin, 2018), Nyege Nyege (Kampala, 2019), Soft Centre (Sydney, 2019), Unsound (Kraków, 2019) and Recombinant (San Francisco, 2019).

  • Harmony Holiday
  • Harmony Holiday is a writer, dancer, archivist, director, and the author of four collections of poetry, Negro League Baseball, Go Find Your Father/A Famous Blues, Hollywood Forever, and A Jazz Funeral for Uncle Tom. She lives in New York and Los Angeles.

  • James Rushford
  • James Rushford is an Australian composer-performer who holds a doctorate from the California Institute of the Arts, and was a 2018 fellow at Academy Schloss Solitude in Stuttgart. His work is drawn from a familiarity with specific concrète, improvised, avant-garde and collagist languages. Currently, his work deals with the aesthetic concept of musical shadow. James has been commissioned as a composer by ensembles including the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra (Glasgow), and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, and regularly performs in Australia and internationally.

  • Jessica Aszodi
  • Jessica Aszodi is an Australian-born, London-based vocalist who has premiered many new pieces, performed work that has lain dormant for centuries, and sung roles ranging from standard operatic repertoire to artistic collaborations. She has been a soloist with ensembles including ICE; the Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide Symphony Orchestras; and San Diego and Chicago Symphony Orchestras’ chamber series. Aszodi can be heard on numerous recordings and has sung in festivals around the world. She holds a Doctorate of Musical Arts from the Queensland Conservatorium, an MFA from the University of California, and is co-director of the Resonant Bodies Festival (Australia), and artistic associate of BIFEM.

  • KT Spit
  • Kt Spit (Katie Collins) is an artist and musician based in Narrm (Melbourne). Lyrically and visually her work explores subcultural narratives and challenges dominant representations of loss, grief, and true love. In 2015 Kt independently released her debut album, Combluotion, and in 2019 will release a visual album entitled Kill the King.

  • Immy Chuah and The Convoy
  • The Convoy conjure illustrious soundscapes from the abyss of chaos, revealing hidden worlds of the imagination as the performance takes form and infuses with subjective experience. Using instruments of sound, light and smell, The Convoy enchant space with themes of tension, evolution, entropy and regeneration. Sensorial immersion transports audiences through highly dynamic environments that shift and blend into one single, breathing moment. As entity, rather than singular, Immy Chuah is a guest within The Convoy on unceded land.

  • Sam Peterson
  • I’m interested in what can be done with one’s identity and the space around it. Both my body and mind, touching everyday feelings between the rational, the playful and the political. Of course, this is often to do with my disability and my sexuality. My work has been focused on access, and the lack of it — to places, people’s minds and opportunities. I find plasticine is a great subverter of space and potentially of people’s minds. And the continued flexibility of it is something I am really enjoying — covering or filling up gaps and playing with crevices. But I’m finding that my work is drawing more and more to spoken word as a powerful format.

  • Sarah McCauley
  • Sarah McCauley is a Melbourne-based music producer, editor and writer.

  • Neil Morris
  • Neil Morris is a Yorta Yorta, Dja Dja Wurrung man. He is well known in Narrm/Birraranga for his musical project DRMNGNOW, a project built on subject matter tackling the colonial nature of the Australian construct and how that affects contemporary society upon this land. The work is unapologetic, clear, and deeply poetic. It hints toward Morris's extensive experience as a spoken word artist in Narrm since 2015. Morris's work is triumphant in the face of severe adversity often imbued in a quite fortified melancholy, a powerful marker of the survival of First Nations peoples in the now.

  • Natasha Tontey
  • Natasha Tontey is an artist and graphic designer based in Yogyakarta. She is interested in exploring the concept of fiction as a method of speculative thinking. Through her artistic practice she investigates the idea of how fear, horror, and terror could be manifested in order to control the public and how fictional accounts of the history and myth surrounding ‘manufactured fear’ might operate as a method of speculative fiction that determines expectations for the future.

  • Mat Spisbah
  • Mat Spisbah is a New Media curator with a unique portfolio of programming that seeks to integrate non-traditional artistic methods and emerging technologies. Having lived in Hong Kong for 14 years, he is connected to the region’s art and culture, and has created professional networks with artists, curators, galleries, promoters and industry professionals across Australasia. Portfolio highlights include the debut Australian performances of north Asian artists including: Howie Lee, Rui Ho, Meuko Meuko, Pan Daijing, Alex Zhang Hungtai, Tzusing, and Gabber Modus Operandi.

  • Mandy Nicholson
  • Mandy Nicholson is a Wurundjeri-willam (Wurundjeri-baluk patriline) artist and Traditional Custodian of Melbourne and surrounds. Mandy also has connections to the Dja Dja wurrung and Ngurai illam wurrung language groups of the Central/Eastern Kulin Nation. Mandy gained a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Aboriginal Archaeology in 2011, worked for the Victorian Aboriginal Corporation for Languages for six years and is now a PhD candidate studying how Aboriginal people connect to Country, Off Country.

  • Lucreccia Quintanilla
  • Lucreccia Quintanilla is an artist, writer, DJ and PhD candidate researcher at Monash University. Her writing and art have been published and exhibited both within Australia and internationally. Quintanilla’s practice is a collaborative one that manifests into outcomes within galleries and also as events and performances outside of that context. She regularly speaks at panels and symposiums on themes within her research, has received grants for her projects and residencies, and has taught at university level.

  • Amanda Stewart
  • Amanda Stewart is a poet, author, and vocal artist. She has created a diverse range of publications, performances, film and radio productions in Australia, Europe, Japan, and the USA, working in literature, new music, broadcasting, theatre, dance, and new media environments. Amanda collaborated with Chris Mann for many years in the Australian ensemble, Machine For Making Sense (with Jim Denley, Rik Rue, and Stevie Wishart), as well as in other contexts. Her poem ‘ta’ was written in honour of Chris Mann’s extraordinary vision and work.

  • Holly Childs
  • Holly Childs is an artist and writer. Her research involves filtering stories of computation through frames of ecology, earth, memory, poetry, and light. She is the author of two books: No Limit (Hologram, Melbourne) and Danklands (Arcadia Missa, London), and she collaborates with Gediminas Žygus on ‘Hydrangea’. She is currently writing her third book, What Causes Flowers Not to Bloom?.

  • Ivy Alvarez
  • Ivy Alvarez’s poetry collections include The Everyday English Dictionary, Disturbance, and Mortal. Her latest is Diaspora: Volume L (Paloma Press, 2019). A Fellow of MacDowell Colony (US), and Hawthornden (UK), her work is widely published and anthologised (twice in Best Australian Poems), with poems translated into Russian, Spanish, Japanese and Korean. Born in the Philippines and raised in Australia, she lived in Wales for almost a decade, before arriving in New Zealand in 2014.

  • Nick Ashwood
  • Nick Ashwood is a guitarist, composer, improviser and performer from Nipaluna/Tasmania now residing in Sydney. His focuses have been exploring deep listening, harmonic space and the possibilities of the steel-string acoustic guitar by means of preparations, just intonation, objects and bowing.

  • Johnny Chang
  • Berlin-based composer-performer Johnny Chang engages in extended explorations surrounding the relationships of sound/listening and the in-between areas of improvisation, composition and performance. Johnny is part of the Wandelweiser composers collective and currently collaborates with: Catherine Lamb (Viola Torros project), Mike Majkowski (illogical harmonies), Phill Niblock, Samuel Dunscombe, Derek Shirley and others.

  • Megan Alice Clune
  • Megan Alice Clune shifts between musician, composer and artist. Primarily, her work explores both the concept and aesthetics of ambient music through sound installation, collaboration and performance. Megan is the founding member of the Alaska Orchestra, and has presented work and undertaken residencies across Australia, Asia, Europe and North America, including the Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival (MA), Next Wave Festival, Underbelly Arts Festival, Performa 15 (NYC) and VividLIVE at the Sydney Opera House.

  • Andrew Fedorovitch
  • Andrew Fedorovitch is compos mentis.
 Andrew Fedorovitch embodies professionalism in every aspect of his life, including music.

  • Shota
  • Shota is an artist working in Australia. He makes sound-based works for varying contexts. He has had the opportunity to collaborate with a multitude of artists from varying disciplines. Shota is currently an honours student who is associated with the Plant ecophysiology and Ecosystem processes lab at the University of Sydney.

  • Sonya Holowell
  • Sonya Holowell is a Dharawal woman, vocalist, composer and writer working across new and experimental genres. The contexts for her work, and the forms they take, are diverse and deeply questioning. Her practice comprises interdisciplinary collaboration, improvisation, multi-form writing and conceptual composition. She is also a workshop facilitator; a curator of the Now Now Festival; lecturer in experimental vocal practice; and a co-founder/editor of online arts publication ADSR Zine.

  • Alexandra Spence
  • Alexandra Spence is an artist and musician living on Gadigal country in Sydney, Australia. She makes installations, compositions and performances based on (everyday) sound and listening. Through her practice she attempts to reimagine the intricate relationships between the listener, the object, and the surrounding environment as a kind of communion or conversation. She has a current, near-spiritual, obsession with the animation of material and object through sound. Alex has performed and presented work on radio, in concerts, festivals, symposiums and galleries worldwide, and has two releases: Waking, She Heard The Fluttering, with Room40, and Immaterial, with Longform Editions.

  • MP Hopkins
  • MP Hopkins is an artist based in Sydney, Australia, that is concerned with how to record voices that are not really there, and ways to make voices that are there not sound like voices. He makes audio recordings, performances, and texts.

  • Joel Stern
  • Joel Stern is a curator, researcher, and artist living and working on Wurundjeri land in Melbourne, Australia. He has been Artistic Director of Liquid Architecture since 2013. In 2018, with critical legal scholar James Parker, Stern curated Eavesdropping, an expansive project addressing the ‘pol­i­tics of lis­ten­ing’ through work by artists, researchers, writ­ers, detainees and activists from Aus­tralia and around the world.

  • Georgia Hutchison
  • Georgia Hutchison is a cultural development practitioner and arts executive in Naarm/Melbourne, and Executive Director/CEO of Liquid Architecture. Her practice as an artist, educator, organiser and strategist crosses contemporary art, music, design and social justice.

  • Rob Thorne
  • Rob Thorne (Ngāti Tumutumu) is a new and original voice in the evolving journey of Taonga Puoro. His debut album Whāia te Māramatanga (Rattle Records) is a deeply felt and highly concentrated conversation between the past and the present—a musical passage of identity and connection. Using modern loop technology and traditional Māori flutes and horns made from stone, bone, shell and wood, Thorne creates a transcendent aural experience that touches the soul with timeless beauty. Every performance of Whāia te Māramatanga is a stunning and very personal exploration of the spiritual and healing qualities of an ancient practice.

  • Michiko Ogawa
  • Michiko Ogawa is a performer-composer specialising in the clarinet, born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. She performs not only classical repertoire but also contemporary and experimental music, including free improvisation and film soundtrack work. In 2019 she was awarded a doctorate (DMA) from the University of California San Diego, with a dissertation focusing on the film music of Teiji Ito. She is in the begin­ning stages of writ­ing a biogra­phy of Ito’s life.

  • Emma Nixon
  • Curious about the tender intersections between art, life and friendships, Emma Nixon is an emerging curator and writer. In 2018 she completed a Bachelor of Art History and Curating at Monash University and co-founded Cathedral Cabinet ARI in the Nicholas Building. In Melbourne she has curated and written about exhibitions that investigate subjects such as abstraction, the domestic, care and collage within contemporary art.

  • Fayen d'Evie
  • Fayen d’Evie is an artist and writer, based in Muckleford, Australia. Her projects are often conversational and collaborative, and resist spectatorship by inviting audiences into sensorial readings of artworks. Fayen advocates the radical potential for blindness, arguing that blindness offers critical positions and methods attuned to sensory translations, ephemerality, the tangible and the intangible, concealment, uncertainty, the precarious, and the invisible. With artist Katie West, Fayen co-founded the Museum Incognita, which revisits neglected or obscured histories through scores that activate embodied readings. Fayen is also the founder of 3-ply, which investigates artist-led publishing as an experimental site for the creation, dispersal, translation, and archiving of texts.

  • Debris Facility
  • Debris Facility Pty Ltd is a para-corporate entity who engages im/material contexts with the view to highlight and disrupt administrative forms and their embedded power relations. Deploying print, design, installation, and wearables as the most visible parts of operations, they also work in experimental pedagogy and perforated performance of labour. They are a white-settler parasite with theft and dispossession as the implicated ground from which they work. They currently hold contracts with Liquid Architecture, Victorian College of the Arts, Monash University and Debris Facility Pty Ltd.

  • Timmah Ball
  • Timmah Ball is a writer and urban researcher of Ballardong Noongar descent. She has written for The Griffith Review, Right Now, Meanjin, Overland, Westerly, Art Guide Australia, Assemble Papers, The Big Issue, The Lifted Brow, the Victorian Writer magazine and won the Westerly Patricia Hackett Prize for writing.

  • Jessie Scott
  • Jessie Scott is a practising video artist, writer, programmer and producer who works across the spectrum of screen culture in Melbourne. She is a founding member of audiovisual art collective Tape Projects, and co-directed and founded the inaugural Channels Video Art Festival in 2013.

  • Christopher LG Hill
  • Christopher L G Hill is an artist, poet, anarchist, collaborator, facilitator, lover, friend, DJ, performer, sound pervader, publisher of Endless Lonely Planet, co-label boss; Bunyip trax, traveller, homebody, dancer, considerate participator, dishwasher, writer, bencher, eater, exhibitor: Sydney, Physics Room, Westspace, TCB, BUS, Punk Cafe,100 Grand street, Lismore Regional Gallery, Good Press, Gambia Castle, Conical, GCAS, NGV, VCA, Mission Comics, Slopes, Art Beat, Papakura Gallery, Neon Parc, UQ Gallery, Tate Modern, Connors Connors, Glasgow International, Sandy Brown, OFLUXO, New Scenarios, Margaret Lawrence, Flake, Utopian Slumps, World Food Books, Sutton, Rearview, Joint Hassles, a basement, a tree, Innen publications, SAM, Chateau 2F, etc, and tweeter, twitcher, sleeper, Biennale director (‘Melbourne Artist initiated’ 2008, 2011, 2013, 2016, 2018-20), DJ, retired gallerist Y3K, conversationalist who represents them self and others, born Melbourne/Narrm 1980c.e, lives World.
    http://www.christopherlghill.com/
    https://twitter.com/CLGHill
    https://www.instagram.com/christopherlghill/
    https://bunyiptrax.bandcamp.com/
    https://jahjahsphinx.blogspot.com/
    https://boobasprite.tumblr.com/
    http://counterfeitnessfirst.blogspot.com/
    http://newtabandwindowshopper.blogspot.com/
    https://www.mixcloud.com/Christopher_L_G_Hill/
    http://anotheryouapictureavoicemessagemime.blogspot.com/

  • Iliass Saoud
  • Iliass Saoud was born in Halba, Lebanon in 1960 as the sixth of eight children of Wakim and Nadima Saoud. Escaping the Lebanese Civil War in 1977, Iliass migrated to Canada pursued a BA in Mathematics from Dalhouse University in 1982. In 1987 he married Janice Joseph (Fakhry) before settling in Australia to raise his family in 1997, owning a variety of small businesses including the Gaffney Street post office across from the Lincoln Mill’s Centre in Coburg from 2005-2011. Currently, Iliass works part time at a local newsagency and is an avid Bridge player and a dedicated grandfather of one.

  • Dimitri Troaditis
  • Dimitri Troaditis works in the Greek-Australian media. As a poet he has been extensively published in Greece and in Australia in numerous literary journals, websites, blogs and anthologies. He has published six poetry collections and two social history books so far. He has organised poetry readings in Melbourne for years and translates others’ poetry. He runs poetry website To Koskino and was a resident of Coburg for 19 years.

  • Luisa Lana
  • Luisa Lana was born in Australia in 1953. Her mother Nannina had arrived in Australia in 1950 with a 3 month old son, and worked for many years on the sewing room floors and her father Angelo worked on the docks where he helped unionise the Italian workforce. Luisa and her brother were latchkey kids, as they looked after themselves in the morning and ran the ‘Continental’ deli in the evenings. Luisa attained a teaching degree, then a postgrad in Social Sciences, and twice studied Italian at The University for Foreigners in Perugia, Italy. Luisa married Luigino Lana, a Venetian migrant who operated a mechanic business in Brunswick for over 30 years. She devoted her life to being an educator and a mother, teaching Italian to English speakers and English to generations of migrants from around the world. Currently Luisa is translating her father's memoirs from Italian to English, and enjoying being a Nonna.

  • Anabelle Lacroix
  • Anabelle Lacroix is a French-Australian curator, writer and radio contributor. Working independently in Paris, she is based at Fondation Fiminco for a year-long residency focused on the politics of sleeplessness (2020). She has a broad practice, and a current interest in experimental practice, working with performance, sound, discourse and publishing. She is a PhD candidate at UNSW Art & Design.

  • Geoff Robinson
  • Geoff Robinson is a Melbourne-based artist working on Wurundjeri country. Robinson creates event-based artworks that utilise the temporal qualities of sound and performance and the spatial conditions of physical sites to unravel the durational layers of place. Robinson has presented projects with Titanik, Turku; Bus Projects, Melbourne; Liquid Architecture, Melbourne; and MoKS, Mooste, Estonia. He was awarded the Melbourne Prize for Urban Sculpture 2014 and completed the PhD project Durational Situation at MADA, Monash University, Melbourne, 2018.

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  • Mattin is a cross disciplinary artist working with noise, improvisation and dissonance. His work Social Dissonance was presented at documenta 14 in 2017 in Kassel and Athens.

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  • Elena Biserna is a scholar and independent curator based in Marseille (France), working at the intersection of social, political and public spheres.

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  • Tobi Maier is the director of Lisbon’s Municipal Galleries, and recently presented Mattin’s Expanding Concert (2019–2023) a four year long concert distributed in time and space through different media: 5 public interventions in 5 different galleries in Lisbon, and 5 texts published within the city.

  • Clare Milledge
  • Clare Milledge is an artist and academic, she lives and works between the lands of the Arakwal people in Bundjalung country (Broken Head, Northern NSW) and the lands of the Bidjigal and Gadigal people (Paddington, Sydney). She is a Senior Lecturer at UNSW Art & Design and is represented by STATION gallery.

  • Alexander Powers
  • Alexander Powers is a choreographer, performer and DJ from Naarm. In 2019 they premiered their first full length choreographic work Time Loop at the Melbourne Fringe Festival, receiving the Temperance Hall Award at the Fringe Awards. Under the moniker Female Wizard, they are known internationally for their forward-thinking DJ sets. They’ve performed at Golden Plains, Dark Mofo, Boiler Room, Hybrid Festival and Soft Centre and held a four year residency at Le Fag.

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  • Zoe Scoglio’s (often collaborative) practice explores the space of art as a site of study and sociality to engage the radical imagination towards alternative ways of being, knowing and relating. Current research takes critical and collective somatic approaches towards response-ability in these times of ecological collapse, within settler colonial conditions. Past projects have taken place within varied contexts, on top of mountains and under full moons, as large collective choreographies and intimate encounters.

  • Tricky Walsh
  • Tricky Walsh is a non-binary artist working in New Norfolk, Tasmania, who works both collaboratively and in a solo capacity. Their projects focus on both spatial and communication concerns in an increasingly speculative manner and while they use a diversity of media (architecture, painting, drawing, sculpture, installation, sound, film, comics, radio) it is foremost the concept at hand that determines which form of material experimentation occurs within these broader themes.

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  • Kengné Téguia is a Black Deaf HIV+ cyborg artist, who works from sound deafinitely. #TheBLACKRevolutionwillbeDEAFinitelyLoud

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  • Angela Goh is a dancer and choreographer. Her work poses possibilities for disruption and transformation inside the aesthetics and conditions of technocapitalism, planetarity, and the post-anthropocene. She lives and works in Sydney, and has toured her work across Australia, Europe, the UK, the USA and Asia. She received the 2020 Keir Choreographic Award and the inaugural Sydney Dance Company Beyond the Studio Fellowship 2020-21.

  • Jannah Quill
  • Jannah Quill’s deconstructive exploration of electronic instruments and technologies manifests in electronic music production and experimental audio-visual performance and installation. Jannah modifies existing technologies (such as solar panels) into innovative light-to-audio systems, used with software/hardware experimentation and modular synthesis to carve a distinct voice in electronic music and art.

  • Tom Smith
  • Tom Smith is a Melbourne-based artist, musician and researcher whose work combines video assemblages, experimental performance, speculative fiction, electronic music, websites and critical writing. Tom’s work is concerned with the politics and poetics of computational systems, the contradictions of creative economies, generic digital aesthetics and music as a mode of critical inquiry. Tom is also one half of music production duo Utility, and runs an independent record label called Sumactrac with Jarred Beeler (DJ Plead) and Jon Watts.

  • Pris Roos
  • Pris Roos grew up in Rhenen, the Netherlands. Her family migrated from Bogor, Indonesia, to start their own toko in the Netherlands. Toko is the Indonesian word for shop, and they sell non-Western food (products). Roos grew up in the toko, a space of being together, and full of colours, smells, food, stories and images of immigrants. The toko is a source of inspiration for her artistic practices. Stories that are normally not heard find their way in her works. Roos makes portraits of immigrants that she meets in the toko, on the streets or in her surroundings of the South of Rotterdam. She visits them at home or invites them to her atelier. The stories are translated into painted portraits, videos, installations and spoken word performances.

  • Winnie Dunn
  • Winnie Dunn is a Tongan-Australian writer and arts worker from Mt Druitt. She is the general manager of Sweatshop: Western Sydney Literacy Movement and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Western Sydney University. Winnie’s work has been published in the HuffPost Australia, The Saturday Paper, Griffith Review, Meanjin Quarterly, SBS Voices and Cordite. She is the editor of several anthologies including Sweatshop Women, The Big Black Thing and Bent Not Broken. Winnie is currently completing her debut novel as the recipient of a 2019 CAL Ignite Grant.

  • Jon Watts
  • Jon Watts is a Melbourne/Naarm based musician, designer, 3D artist and animator. His music has been released through cult labels SUMAC and Butter Sessions, and he is currently Senior Multimedia Installer at the National Gallery of Victoria.

  • PAN-PAN Kolektiva
  • Pan-Pan Kolektiva was established in March 2020, as a research group on listening. Pan-Pan is a standard emergency call based on the acronym Pan which stands for Pay Attention Now.

  • Nathan Gray
  • Nathan Gray is an artist whose recent works use voice as their medium, taking form as lecture-performances, radio-plays and documentaries, DJ sets, narrative and rumour.

  • Makiko Yamamoto
  • Makiko Yamamoto
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    Mama
    Kik
    Makiki
    Yammer matah
    Ma
    Ki
    ko

  • Leighton Craig
  • Leighton Craig is an artist living in Meanjin/Brisbane. He has been in a number of bands (The Lost Domain, G55, The Deadnotes et al) and is currently a member of the duo Primitive Motion with Sandra Selig.

  • Anne Zeitz
  • Anne Zeitz is associate professor at University Rennes 2. Her research focuses on aural attention, the inaudible, the unheard, and the polyphony in contemporary art. She directed the research project 'Sound Unheard' and she co-organised the eponymous exhibition at the Goethe-Institut Paris, Paris and exhibition 'Échos magnétiques” at the MBA Rennes, Rennes in 2019.

  • Melissa Johnson
  • Melissa Johnson is Associate Professor of Art History & Visual Culture at Illinois State University (Normal, IL). Her scholarly research focuses on the histories of craft and its intersections with modern and contemporary art. She is currently working on a project that explores artists making work in response to the writings of Virginia Woolf. She’s deeply interested in situating her academic writing and her textile-based work as parallel practices, and is working on two writing and textile projects, “Woolf Words” and “Haptic Investigations,” and a project on mending and repair.

  • Diego Ramirez
  • Diego Ramirez makes art, writes about culture, and labours in the arts. In 2018, he showed his video work in a solo screening by ACCA x ACMI and he performed in Lifenessless at West Space x Gertrude Contemporary in 2019. His work has been shown locally and internationally at MARS Gallery, ACMI, Westspace, Torrance Art Museum, Hong-Gah Museum, Careof Milan, Buxton Cotntemporary, WRO Media Art Biennale, Human Resources LA, Art Central HK, Sydney Contemporary, and Deslave. His words feature in Art and Australia, NECSUS, un Projects, Runway Journal, Art Collector, and Australian Book Review. He is represented by MARS Gallery, Editor-at-large at Running Dog and Gallery Manager at SEVENTH.

  • Noemie Cecilia Huttner-Koros
  • Noemie Cecilia Huttner-Koros is a queer Jewish performance-maker, writer, dramaturg, poet, teaching artist and community organiser living and working on Whadjuk Noongar country in Boorloo (Perth). Her practice is driven by a deep belief in the social, political and communal role of art and performance and in engaging with sites and histories where queer culture, composting and ecological crisis occur.

  • Josten Myburgh
  • Josten Myburgh is a musician based on Whadjuk Noongar boodja country who plays with techniques from the worlds of electro-acoustic music, radio art, free improvisation, field recording and experimental composition. He co-directs exploratory music label Tone List and the Audible Edge festival. He has performed in South Africa, the United States, and throughout South East Asia, Europe and Australia. He is a Schenberg Fellow and a student of Antoine Beuger and Michael Pisaro.

  • Aisyah Aaqil Sumito
  • Aisyah Aaqil Sumito is an artist and writer living near Derbarl Yerrigan on Whadjuk Noongar Bibbulmun lands. Their work reflects mostly on personal intersections of disability, queerness and diasporic ancestry in so-called 'australia'. They have recently made text-based contributions to Runway Journal and HERE&NOW20: Perfectly Queer, Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery.

  • Michael Terren
  • Michael Terren is a musician and educator from Boorloo/Perth. Grounded in experimental studio-based practice, his work explores the social construction of the technologies of music’s creation and distribution. He is a sessional academic teaching music at two Boorloo universities, and in 2019 finished a PhD thesis entitled 'The grain of the digital audio workstation'.

  • Joee Mejias
  • Joee Mejias is a musician and video artist from Manila. She is co-producer of WSK, the first and only international festival of digital arts and new media in the Philippines and co-founder of HERESY, a new platform for women in sound and multimedia. She performs as Joee & I: her avant-pop electronica solo project.

  • Myriad Sun
  • Myriad Sun are an experimental audio/visual/rap trio from Walyalup (Fremantle), Australia, composed of electronic producer Ben Aguero, Mc POW! Negro, and Limit Bashr. Additional performers: Mali Jose, Billy Jack Narkle and Polly-Pearl Greenhalgh.

  • Jasmine Guffond
  • Jasmine Guffond is an artist and composer working at the interface of social, political, and technical infrastructures. Focused on electronic composition across music and art contexts her practice spans live performance, recording, installation and custom made browser add-ons. Through the sonification of data she addresses the potential of sound to engage with contemporary political questions and engages listening as a situated-knowledge practice.

  • Sounding Together
  • Sounding Together comprise of the following performers: Rhys Butler (alto saxophone); Simon Charles (soprano saxophone, shakuhachi); Eduardo Cossio (electronics, writing); Luke Cuerel (alto saxophone); Jim Denley (flute, writing); Julia Drouhin (voice, electronics, objects, images); Jameson Feakes (mandolin); Be Gosper (voice, objects); Noemie Huttner-Koros (voice, writing); Lenny Jacobs (percussion); Annette Krebs (amplified string instrument); Annika Moses (voice, images); Josten Myburgh (clarinet, alto saxophone, editing); Dan O’Connor (mastering); Stuart Orchard (guitar, objects, editing); Daisy Sanders (voice, movement).

  • Yan Jun
  • Yan Jun, a musician based in Beijing uses a wide range of materials such as field recording, body, noise and concept. Yan Jun: “I wish I was a piece of field recording.”

  • Katie West
  • Katie West is a multi-disciplinary artist who lives on Noongar Ballardong boodja and belongs to the Yindjibarndi people of the Pilbara tablelands in Western Australia. The process and notion of naturally dyeing fabric underpin her practice – the rhythm of walking, gathering, bundling, boiling up water and infusing materials with plant matter. The objects, installations and happenings that Katie creates invite attention to the ways we weave our stories, places, histories, and futures.

  • Simon Charles
  • Simon Charles is a composer and performer based in Noongar Ballardong Country (Western Australia). His practice reflects an interest in the instability of compositional structures; as friction between musical notation and perception and interactions with place. He has performed at Serralvés Festival (Porto), The Wulf (Los Angeles) Studio Rotor (Berlin), Vigeland Mausoleum (Oslo), Avantwhatever Festival (Melbourne), DATA (Marseille), ANAM Quarttethaus and the Melbourne Recital Centre.

  • Tiarney Miekus
  • Tiarney Miekus is a writer, editor and musician based in Naarm/Melbourne. Her writing has appeared in The Age, Meanjin, The Lifted Brow (Online), Overland, Memo Review, un Magazine, Art Guide Australia, Swampland and RealTime. She is currently editor and podcast producer at Art Guide Australia.

  • Liang Luscombe
  • Liang Luscombe is a Naarm/Melbourne-based visual artist whose practice encompasses painting, sculpture and moving image that engage in a process of generative questioning of how media and film affect audiences.

  • Thembi Soddell
  • Thembi Soddell is a sound artist best known for their powerful acousmatic performances and installations in darkness. In 2019 they were awarded a PhD from RMIT University for their practice-based research titled, A Dense Mass of Indecipherable Fear: The Experiential (Non)Narration of Trauma and Madness through Acousmatic Sound. This research developed a novel approach to understanding lived experiences of anxiety, depression and trauma using a medium (abstract sound) with the unique ability to reflect the intangible nature of the inner world.

  • James Parker
  • James Parker is an academic at Melbourne Law School and long-time associate curator with Liquid Architecture. His work explores the many relations between law, sound and listening. He is currently working on machine listening with Joel Stern and Sean Dockray.

  • Eloise Sweetman
  • Eloise Sweetman loves art, misses her home in Western Australia, all the time loving Rotterdam where she became friends with Pris Roos whose artwork Sweetman speaks of. Sweetman is a curator, artist, writer and teacher working in intimacy, not knowing and material relation. She started Shimmer with Dutch-Australian artist Jason Hendrik Hansma in 2017.

  • Cecilia Vicuña
  • Cecilia Vicuña's work dwells in the not yet, the future potential of the unformed, where sound, weaving, and language interact to create new meanings.

    'In January 1966, I began creating precarios (precarious) installations and basuritas, objects composed of debris, structures that disappear, along with quipus and other weaving metaphors. I called these works 'Arte Precario', creating a new independent category, a non-colonized name for them. The precarios soon evolved into collective rituals and oral performances based on dissonant sound and the shamanic voice. The fluid, multi-dimensional quality of these works allowed them to exist in many media and languages at once. Created in and for the moment, they reflect ancient spiritual technologies—a knowledge of the power of individual and communal intention to heal us and the earth.'
    —Cecilia Vicuña

  • Camila Marambio
  • Camila Marambio is a private investigator, amateur dancer, permaculture enthusiast, and sporadic writer, but first and foremost, she is a curator and the founder/director of Ensayos, a nomadic interdisciplinary research program in Tierra del Fuego.

  • Las Chinas
  • Las Chinas is the cosmic coincidences led to the meeting of Chileans Sarita Gálvez and Camila Marambio in Melbourne. Their shared reverence for the ancestral flautón chino from the Andes Mountains lead to playful explorations of its unique dissonant sounds and thereafter to experimenting with atonal signing and other technologies of the spirit.

    Influenced by Chilean feminist poet Cecilia Vicuña, the now deceased poet Fidel Sepúlveda, the musical ensemble La Chimuchina and the chino bands from the townships of La Canela and Andacollo, Las Chinas honours the ancestral tradition by enacting the principle of tearing each other apart.

  • Bryan Phillips
  • Bryan Phillips A.K.A. Galambo is a Chilean/Australian artist working in community arts, music and performance, using sound as a means to facilitate engagement with others. His practice has mainly been developed in Chile, but after completing his Masters in Community Cultural Development (VCA-2013) he has become involved in projects with artists from Timor-Leste, Indonesia and Australia.

  • Douglas Kahn
  • Douglas Kahn is an historian and theorist of energies in the arts, sound in the arts and sound studies, and media arts, from the late-nineteenth century to the present. His books include Energies in the Arts (MIT Press, 2019); Earth Sound Earth Signal: Energies and Earth Magnitude in the Arts (University of California Press, 2013); Noise Water Meat: A History of Sound in the Arts (MIT Press, 1999); Mainframe Experimentalism: Early Computing and the Foundations of Digital Arts, edited with Hannah Higgins (University of California Press, 2012); and Source: Music of the Avant-garde, edited with Larry Austin (University of California Press, 2011).

  • André Dao
  • André Dao is a writer, editor, researcher, and artist. His debut novel, Anam, won the 2021 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an Unpublished Manuscript. He is also the co-founder of Behind the Wire, an oral history project documenting people’s experience of immigration detention and a producer of the Walkley-award winning podcast, The Messenger. He is a member of the Manus Recording Project Collective.

  • Poppy de Souza
  • Poppy de Souza is a Meanjin (Brisbane) based researcher affiliated with Griffith University and UNSW. Her work focuses on the politics of voice and listening—broadly defined—in conditions of inequality and injustice, including the relationship between sound, race, and conditions of (not) being heard. Poppy has previously worked in community arts and cultural development (CACD), and with the national Film and Sound Archive as a curator on australianscreen.

  • Andrew Brooks
  • Andrew Brooks is an artist, writer, and teacher who lives on unceded Wangal land. He is a lecturer in media cultures at UNSW, one half of the critical art collective Snack Syndicate, and a member of the Rosa Press Collective. Homework, a book of essays co-written with Astrid Lorange, was recently published by Discipline.

  • Behrouz Boochani
  • Behrouz Boochani is a Kur­dish-Iran­ian writer, jour­nal­ist, scholar, cul­tural advo­cate and film­maker. He was writer for the Kur­dish lan­guage mag­a­zine Werya. He writes reg­u­larly for The Guardian and sev­eral other pub­li­ca­tions. Boochani is also co-direc­tor (with Arash Kamali Sar­ves­tani) of the 2017 fea­ture-length film Chauka, Please Tell Us the Time, and author of No Friend but the Moun­tains: Writ­ing from Manus Prison. He was held on Manus Island from 2013 until 2019.

  • Emma Russell
  • Emma Russell is a critical carceral studies scholar and senior lecturer in crime, justice and legal studies at La Trobe University, Australia. She researches and writes on policing and criminalisation, prisons, detention, and activism. Emma is the author of Queer Histories and the Politics of Policing (2020) and co-author of Resisting Carceral Violence: Women’s Imprisonment and the Politics of Abolition (2018).

  • Jason De Santolo
  • Jason De Santolo (Garrwa and Barunggam) is a researcher & creative producer based in the School of Design, University of Technology Sydney, Australia. He has worked with his own communities as an activist and advocate using film and performance, protest and education to bring attention to injustices and design solutions using Indigenous knowledge.

  • Kynan Tan
  • Kynan Tan is an artist interested in the relations and conditions of computational systems, with a focus on data, algorithm, networks, materiality, control, and affect. These areas are explored using computer-generated artworks that take the form of simulations, video, sound, 3d prints, text, code, and generative algorithms.

  • Snack Syndicate
  • Snack Syndicate, two rats (Andrew Brooks and Astrid Lorange) living on unceded Wangal land; texts, objects, events, meals, and publics.

  • Spence Messih
  • Spence Messih is an artist living and working on Gadigal land. Their practice speaks broadly to sites of pressure, power structures, materiality, and language, and more specifically about these things in relation to their own trans experience.

  • Tom Melick
  • Tom Melick is the co-editor of Slug and part of the Rosa Press Collective and Stolon Press.

  • Trisha Low
  • Trisha Low is a writer living in the East Bay. She is the author of The Compleat Purge (Kenning Editions, 2013) and Socialist Realism (Emily Books/Coffee House Press, 2019).

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Manus Recording Project Collective

Interview: André Dao and Behrouz Boochani

<p>Arash Kamali Sarvestani and Behrouz Boochani, <em>Chauka, Please Tell Us The Time</em> (2017), video still, depicting the fence at Manus Regional Processing Centre, before its closure and detainees were moved to other facilities on the island.</p>

Arash Kamali Sarvestani and Behrouz Boochani, Chauka, Please Tell Us The Time (2017), video still, depicting the fence at Manus Regional Processing Centre, before its closure and detainees were moved to other facilities on the island.

The following text is an edited transcript of a conversation, conducted in English, between André Dao and Behrouz Boochani, two of the artists who made how are you today: André from Melbourne, Australia, Behrouz during his incarceration on Manus island, Papua New Guinea. The conversation took place on 3 December in plenary at the 2019 meeting of the Law, Literature and Humanities Association of Australasia, on Yugambeh land in the Gold Coast. Boochani had arrived in Aotearoa, New Zealand barely two weeks before, following more than six years of detention on Manus Island, having originally sought asylum in Australia.

André Dao (AD)

It’s incredible to have you here, also incredible that you’re in New Zealand. It was quite surreal to see those photos of you at the airport in New Zealand, and then to see the photos of you at Eavesdropping in Wellington. I will ask you a few questions about that exhibition in particular. But just to begin with, what has it been like for you to be in New Zealand, and to be free?

Behrouz Boochani (BB)

Thank you very much. Actually, I’m mostly happy because of the internet. I think it’s the first time I’ve had access to good internet so I can meet with people. As you know, I was at Gus Fisher Gallery, then in Wellington, at City Gallery. In both places they showed me these works. And actually, we didn’t know that on that particular day, I would be in New Zealand. So it was quite exciting for the people there too, because they didn’t know, and we couldn’t tell them because of the media. On the day we arrived there, the most interesting thing for me was when I was sitting in the gallery. I was listening to these voices. It was the first time I was looking at Manus, from a different place. So, it was very interesting. I’m very excited. Now I’m here, thank you.

AD

So I was wondering, what was it like? You mentioned that it was the first time you were looking at and listening to Manus, from a different place. And that it is still so recent for you. Have you begun to think about what difference that has made for you, to listen to those recordings in New Zealand?

BB

Yeah, when I arrived in New Zealand, people asked me about my feelings. And for the first time, I looked at the past. Because when I was in Manus, I did not have time to think about myself. Because the journey still continues, the struggle still continues. But when I arrived in New Zealand for the first time, I looked at the past. I was quite emotional. I am happy that I survived. Of course, when you look at Manus…you know, for me, it was part of history. I felt that these works are important, because we recorded part of the history, part of the life in Manus Island. I was glad that at least we had this material. Although, for people in Manus Island and Nauru, history is not important. People don’t care about history. People don’t care what history judges, and what the next generation thinks about this historical period. But for me, and for the people who have been working in this field for years, at least we can say that we recorded part of this history. And I should mention this: that all of us who worked, we started to work to create change, to change this policy. You know, we didn’t just want to record these works, or create these materials for history. We wanted to make change, and to have an impact on Australia. We wanted to help people understand. That is my feeling and my understanding about these works. Unfortunately these works belong to history because we didn’t change the policy. Of course, we achieved many things, and most people have already been released from Port Moresby, Manus Island, and Nauru. But still some people remain. Still, now in the Australian parliament, politicians are saying that ‘we should not let these people through,’ or have access to medical treatment. So still the struggle continues, unfortunately we should accept that in this current generation, we couldn’t change. That is the reality.

AD

So if you think back to the end of 2018, when you were making these recordings; were you thinking of them in this way; that they were already something for history, but wouldn’t be something that could change generations, as you say?

BB

Well in the past two years, I myself became disappointed and I look at these works mostly for history, because we wanted to record this. So I was thinking about it, in this way. I think what’s really important about this artwork is that we help people feel the men in Manus Island. We take them into the camp to live with us. That’s why I always criticize journalistic language, because it is not capable of doing that. Journalistic language is the kind of language that follows governmental language, and is the kind of language that power structures use to spread propaganda, to justify this barbaric policy. That’s why I think we should look at these works in a different way. They are important because they are artistic works. I feel art is the most powerful language to share this story, to tell this tragedy, not journalism.

AD

It’s so interesting to hear you talking about this distinction, between journalistic language and artistic language. I think elsewhere, you have talked about literary language too. But then thinking about the recording that we were all listening to as we walked into this auditorium: it was the second recording that you made for this project. It’s you, sitting by the fence, listening to the sounds of the jungle. I’ve always been struck by that recording, because you talked about making these recordings for history, and to make people live with you in the camp. You chose to record the sounds of the jungle, rather than what other people might have thought you would’ve recorded, like something spectacular, or something violent. But instead, it was you, sitting there and listening. I wondered why you made that choice.

BB

Yeah, I think I should return to my movie, Chauka, Please Tell Us the Time (2017). It’s about ninety minutes. And people asked, ‘Why didn’t you show much violence? Why didn’t you show more physical violence, created by the guards?’ You know, I had many shots of that, but I only included two shots in the movie. Where the guards attacked a man, and another man’s suicide attempt. The reason we decided to do that is because that is the reality of life in Manus Island in the detention centre. And in this particular work, I just recorded the voice of the jungle. For people who look at Manus and try to understand this system through journalistic language, they just hear it from the news, the media. When something happens, like violence, they look at Manus, they forget about it later. It’s true, that when we were in that place, everyday, every moment, we were struggling with systematic torture. But I think time is very important. I wanted to show time, and silence [by recording the jungle]. To help people imagine it properly. For years and years and years, you would just listen to the jungle. You just listen to the animals, you look at the wall. People think that every day, morning to night, we are engaged with physical violence on Manus, and the guards attack us. But the reality is, that it’s not like this. You know, for most of the life lived in that place is people sitting, being tortured by time.

I know that for the audience, it is quite hard to just sit down and listen to the jungle for ten minutes. And I witnessed that, in Wellington, Dunedin, and Auckland. Some people just couldn’t stay, they left the gallery, and tried to listen to another voice. But that is the reality. We were in that prison, in those circumstances, for more than six years. People in the gallery couldn’t listen, couldn’t even make it ten minutes. So that’s the main torture of being in this system: time, silence. People are losing their dreams. They are losing their life. That’s why I decided to help the audience imagine how life is, inside the prison. In all of my words, in my book and all of my other writing, there is a desire… For people to just understand a different way, that moves away from journalistic language.

27.07.18 (play)(pause)
Behrouz, the day before yes­ter­day, walk­ing in the jungle in the morn­ing
View on Manus Recording Project Collective
AD

You mentioned that you saw people sitting in the gallery. You finally got to see people responding to the work. As you watched people in the gallery listening, or not listening to the ten minutes, was it different to what you imagined back in 2018, when you were making the recordings? What do you think the people in the gallery involved were doing? Did you imagine them sitting through the ten minutes, did you imagine them living with you in the camp? And how was this different to what you saw in Wellington?

BB

Six years ago, I said that if only one individual person read my work, I would write, and continue to write for that individual person. And that is my philosophy, in this work. For this recording, of course, there will be people who find it boring, and they won’t want to listen. But there are many people here, who just sit down and try to understand. They close their eyes, just to imagine the people in Manus, and try to make a connection with the men, in Manus. And that’s why I think this work is very interesting. Because it shows humanity. It shows feeling. It shows that these men are innocent, that they are the same as you. And it takes the audience inside the prison camp, just to live with them for a while. To witness their lives. Another thing really that is very important, is that this system treats us in a way where we do not exist. But we do exist. Sometimes we exist in Australia, through these artworks, you know. That part is very surreal: that these men exist on Manus, and the government denied them, denied that they existed. But now, they appear in galleries, and created a space so that the people of Australia could have a connection with them and listen to them. Someone told me that everywhere they go, they see my book in the back of the shop. So we exist. That is the important thing about this work. That it allows us to say: here we are.

AD

It is true that your book is everywhere. As I was on my way here, at the airport, I saw your face in the bookshop. It’s quite incredible to think of how prominent and visible your book and your work has been, over the past couple of years. One of the strange things for me, listening to that recording with you sitting by the fence, and some of your other recordings where nothing much happens in some ways, is that there is some beauty in those recordings too. And I wanted to ask you about this beauty, and in particular, natural beauty. In the recordings, and in your work more generally. The book that we made with you and some of the other men on Manus, and detention centres elsewhere, we called it They Cannot Take the Sky after a line from you, about the importance of the sky. So I wanted to ask you about beauty and especially natural beauty in your work.

BB

Yeah, I don’t think it’s only for me. I talk about myself, only as an example. Finding beauty and creating beauty is so important, in a system that is designed to humiliate you, take your dignity, take your identity, and your humanity. It’s important for people on Manus to survive, through these kinds of creations. And when I say creation, I don’t mean writing a book, or a novel. I mean creation, as a small thing. Sometimes, when men are sitting together, and when one of them makes a joke. It is a kind of performance, it can be a form of art, it is a theoretical work. Or if a man is taking care of the animals like in one of my recordings, where I had a conversation with ‘duck man’. He was a man that loved ducks, he loved animals. There is a connection between people, animals, and nature, and finding beauty helps them [the people] survive. It helps them to resist, it keeps their dignity alive. Because the system is established to humiliate people and take their identity. Sometimes I imagine Manus prison in a different place, and I don’t know if we could’ve survived, you know. We always rely on nature. Sometimes, nature is the sky. That’s why we called the book, They Cannot Take The Sky. Sometimes it’s the animals, sometimes it was the jungle, sometimes birds flew above the prison camp, and you could see them for a few seconds. This kind of beauty actually helped people to understand that life still continued, that life still continues. It is my understanding of life; that life is beauty, and understanding beauty, is understanding what’s going on in this world. I try to show some of the beauty that exists in Manus. Even in the worst places in the world, you can find some beauty. And, you know, people tell me ‘you are an idealist’. But I came from that place, you know, so I don’t sit in my office and say ‘Oh, beauty’. It is not a slogan. This is my understanding, on the meaning of life, and trying to find beauty in those circumstances [on Manus]. So that’s why people create. Creations are sometimes a poem, sometimes a piece of art, sometimes a very small thing. Sometimes cooking, you know. So this creation of this beauty, is how people survive and exist.

AD

Well, my next question was going to be about Mansour, the ‘duck man’, and more generally about the recordings you made of other people. They’re obviously very different to the recordings, where you were sitting next to the jungle. And you answered a bit of this question just then, when you were talking about the small acts of creation, that helped men survive on the island. So I was wondering, when you spoke to Mansour, is that what you were trying to record? How other people survived.

BB

Yeah. His name is Mansour Shoushtari. I would like to ask everyone to read the article, the story that I wrote about Mansour. It was published in The Guardian. The title of the story is ‘Duck Man’. I knew Mansour, and he accepted to share his story. Later, when Michael Green contacted me [to make the recordings], I thought it would be good to take the audience to Manus, to sit with me and Mansour, and listen to him directly. What’s interesting about Mansour, is that he always has a small child in himself, you know. Even in such extreme circumstances. Mansour is about forty-five years old, but he has looked like a child many times. That’s why I wanted to record his story in a different way, because before, I just wrote about him. Later, I wanted people to listen to him directly. That is: the way that he loved ducks. He loved the ducks more than any other animal. But he also loved the dogs. He loved birds. Even the other animals that people didn’t care about, like crabs, and snakes. He has a deep connection with the land and with nature. And what I want to say is that people, such as Mansour, are not creating this beauty just for themselves. They are not just helping themselves, or resisting the system. In fact, they are creating beauty for others too, you know. So when you are in circumstances like Manus, there are people such as Mansour around you. We can use that beauty. Sometimes when you have a small, short conversation with a person like Mansour, it makes you happy. It creates life, it creates some meaning. I describe a similar character in the book, who I called Maysam the whore, who is constantly playing the system. For months, he dances, he sings, he makes fun. He is a symbol for these kinds of people. Mansour is one of them.

31.08.18 (play)(pause)
Behrouz, late last night, having a discussion with Mansour the duck man
View on Manus Recording Project Collective
AD

In the final recording for how are you today, you record a conversation with the photographer Hoda Afshar. You talked with her about new documentary or artistic languages, one in which the subject actively collaborates in the creation of the artwork. Listening to the recording again, you’re asking the audience to essentially eavesdrop on what is otherwise a private conversation between two artists. I wondered why you chose to record that conversation for this project?

BB

Firstly, it was my daily life in Manus. When I spoke with Michael about this project, he explained to me, ‘We are recording your daily lives’. Almost every day, I had an event, or I had to participate in an event. I’d have to have conversations with people, with the artists. I was working, so that’s the way I recorded it. The second thing is that I think it’s very important, this language of photography. For years, I have been working with photo journalists, and I’ve always criticized them. They use the camera as a weapon. They use the camera in a way where the subject is completely passive. The subject is completely powerless. They use the camera like a weapon, and they take a shot. I describe that in the book, when they took me from Christmas Island to Port Moresby, the photographers were taking shots of us, without getting permission. And they took those shots in a situation where we were completely powerless, we couldn’t even talk to them. So in this kind of photographic language, you reduce people, and you take their identities. For us, on Manus, identity was a key concept, because the system was designed to take our identities, they reduced us to numbers. So that’s why I liked Hoda and the portrait she did. The subjects weren’t passive. The subjects were part of the creation process. For example, for my portrait, we made a fire behind me. Other men made fire and smoke behind me. I set it up as an example of my style, and the way I was standing in front of the camera, made me feel as if I wasn’t powerless in front of the lens. The portrait represented my identity. I really like to have that conversation, and to share that with the people involved in this project. People look at us, think about the language of journalism, and then compare that to the language of art.

26.10.18 (play)(pause)
Behrouz, last night, on a phone call with photographer Hoda Afshar
View on Manus Recording Project Collective
AD

You mentioned it was part of your daily life on Manus to be an artist, to write, to think. Now that you’re in New Zealand, how do you think that will change your role as an artist and thinker? You’re no longer detained, but in some ways you’re in exile. How will your perception change?

BB

Yeah, I think it will. As a writer, as a poet. For me, art and literature is life itself, and that is why I prefer to write poems where, for example, I am walking down Queen St in Auckland, and I’ll describe the sky: you know, my feelings, rather than writing poetry ‘about Manus’. Because I’m not in Manus, I’m in Auckland. That’s why life is important for me. From now, I’m not going to write about Manus, in literature or in artistic language. But what I’m doing about Manus and this policy, is to work, and continue to work with researchers and universities, on Manus and Nauru. To transfer this experience to the younger generations, through the education system. I know I’m working with researchers and academics in this way. Right now, as I’m speaking with you, I know at least seven or eight students who are studying PhDs, with various case studies on Manus. I know many people studying masters, doing case studies on Manus. So I am helping them, I’m working on the future. As an archiving mentality, I will work with researchers on this issue for the rest of my life, because it’s very complicated. It’s very important in a political, philosophical, and historical way. I will work on it in this way. But as an artist and writer, Manus is finished for me.

Contributor/s

André Dao is a writer, editor, researcher, and artist. His debut novel, Anam, won the 2021 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an Unpublished Manuscript. He is also the co-founder of Behind the Wire, an oral history project documenting people’s experience of immigration detention and a producer of the Walkley-award winning podcast, The Messenger. He is a member of the Manus Recording Project Collective.

Behrouz Boochani is a Kur­dish-Iran­ian writer, jour­nal­ist, scholar, cul­tural advo­cate and film­maker. He was writer for the Kur­dish lan­guage mag­a­zine Werya. He writes reg­u­larly for The Guardian and sev­eral other pub­li­ca­tions. Boochani is also co-direc­tor (with Arash Kamali Sar­ves­tani) of the 2017 fea­ture-length film Chauka, Please Tell Us the Time, and author of No Friend but the Moun­tains: Writ­ing from Manus Prison. He was held on Manus Island from 2013 until 2019.

Editor/s James Parker

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
The writings included in Sitting by the Fence near the Jungle: Reflections on the Manus Recording Project Collective were originally published in Law Text Culture, as part of a larger peer reviewed collection on the ‘Acoustics of Justice: Law, Listening, Sound’, edited by James Parker, Sara Ramshaw and Mehera San Roque. The collection is generously reproduced here under a Creative Commons licence (non-commercial) with the permission of the journal. The original PDFs can be downloaded here, along with fifteen other pieces (some of which are forthcoming in August 2021). We ask that you cite to the originals. But we hope this version of the dossier, which places the writing in direct conversation with the Manus Recording Project Collective’s original audio recordings, offers readers a different reading experience, as well as opening the work up to new audiences.

The editor would like to thank Joel Stern as co-curator of how are you today and where are you today, Liang Luscombe and Monet Jones for their amazing editorial support and Public Office for the beautiful design. The works discussed in this dossier were originally commissioned as part of the Eavesdropping exhibition, staged at The Ian Potter Museum of Art, Melbourne in 2018 and City Gallery, Wellington in 2019. We thank these institutions for their support in the public stagings of the project. Most of all, sincere thanks to every member of the Manus Recording Project Collective — Abdul Aziz Muhamat, Farhad Bandesh, Behrouz Boochani, Kazem Kazemi, Shamindan Kanapathi, Samad Abdul, Farhad Rahmati, Thanush Selvraj, Yasin Abdallah, Michael Green, André Dao and Jon Tjhia. In solidarity for their ongoing struggles for freedom and justice.

This dossier was produced online, and across multiple unceded Indigenous Lands in so-called ‘Australia’ and Aetearoa, New Zealand. We acknowledge the people of the Kulin Nation as the custodians of the lands on which we work. We pay our respects to Indigenous Elders, past and present.

Notes

    Disclaimer is a journal for new thinking and writing on listening and sound. Published by Liquid ArchitectureDisclaimer is a journal for new thinking and writing on listening and sound. Published by Liquid Architecture
    Disclaimer is a journal for new thinking and writing on listening and sound. Published by Liquid Architecture • Disclaimer is a journal for new thinking and writing on listening and sound. Published by Liquid Architecture
    Score: Natasha Tontey ‘Church of Xenoglossia’, 2019

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