Museum of Contemporary Art Sydney Experimental Universe with the Hi God People
Pia Borg, Emile Zile and Amiel Courtin Wilson
Experimental Universe is a program of events featuring films, music and performances created by Australian artists responding to Yoko Ono’s rarely-visited instructional works, Six Film Scripts (1964) and Imaginary Film Series (1968). Running over two nights (6 February and 13 February) the program also includes two film screenings of early Yoko Ono films, Apotheosis (1970) and Two Virgins (1968). In this second blog post for theMCA, Joel Stern and Danni Zuvela of OtherFilm introduce the artists featured on night one (6 February).
Film scores are blueprints for potential films; unlike traditional/industrial film scripts, which are prescriptive, film scores encourage an “open work”, one which is, arguably, co-created by the score originator and the interpreter. In the mid-1960s, reflecting her contact with fluxus ideas, Yoko Ono produced a number of highly imaginative scores for films which were never translated into film works. For Experimental Universe, OtherFilm offered some of Australia’s most interesting contemporary artists the chance to interpret one of Yoko Ono’s film scores.
Each artist has prepared a new work in response to OtherFilm’s commission that – putatively – takes one of Yoko’s scripts from the Imaginary Film Series as its point of departure. Some of these interpretations stick quite closely to Yoko’s initial prescriptions; others treat her ‘scores’ as suggestions to spark off other creative investigations.
As part of the process of thinking through Yoko Ono’s scores, we asked the artists for their thoughts on the idea of the score – whether it was constrictive or freeing – and how this may have conditioned the creation of their work in Experimental Universes.
Art BY TWILIGHT
hEIDE mUSEUM OF mODERN aRT, mELBOURNE
EXPLORE FUTURE PRIMITIVE IN A NIGHT OF
CREATIVITY, CONVERSATION AND LIVE MUSIC.
Listen to micro talks from ‘Future Primitive’ artists Graham Fletcher, Daniel Boyd and Alasdair McLuckie
Watch an exclusive live performance by Melbourne artist Dylan Martorell
Get crafty with artist Siri Hayes
Enjoy a DJ set from Triple R’s Breaking & Entering.
A summer BBQ and drinks will be available for purchase from Café Vue Heide.
Includes museum admission & a glass of Yering Station wine on arrival.
Site Overlay / Acoustic Survey is a series of three events using sound, performance and installation to explore the relationship between three Melbourne interior, exterior, built and botantical environments. Featuring performance contributions by local artists Ernie Althoff, Tim Catlin, Alice Hui-Sheng Chang, Matthew Davis, Aviva Endean, Helen Grogan, Rosalind Hall, Dylan Martorell and Charlie Sofo.
Site Overlay / Acoustic Survey makes use of rich site-specific sound recordings to present one-hour long performances, exploring the sounds and spaces of three diverse inner-city locations. In the events Robinson presents a sonic and spatial collage, overlaying the sounds of each site with those of another. The events will present audiences with a new insight into the sonic environments of the RMIT Design Hub rooftop, the Forest Gallery at the Melbourne Museum and Long Island at the Royal Botanic Gardens.
Each event will surround audiences with recorded and live sound performance, presenting an immersive and participatory exploration of the artist’s interest in sound collage and mapping our sonic experiences of public space.
The Site Overlay / Acoustic Survey project is supported by Experimenta Media Arts and funded by the Arts Development Project Grants through Arts Victoria.
Future Primitive conveys a link to modern twentieth-century art inspired by indigenous artefacts—a history that is the subject of works by artists such as Narelle Jubelin, Daniel Boyd, and Alasdair McLuckie, who are among eighteen artists from Australia and New Zealand included in the exhibition. More broadly, the exhibition draws together a range of work by artists who conjoin modernist ideas or forms with atavistic, totemic or tribal motifs, employ traditional handcrafts or fundamental materials and ways of making such as ceramics or weaving to contemporary ends, or forge their personal style/ identity through images or ideas they identify with across cultures and times. Some of the artists turn the table on modernist primitivism and explore its specific local histories, some make reparative gestures, attracted to what joins cultures or communities rather than what divides, others provoke questions and sidestep the usual decorum around the subject. Many of the works move forward and back between past and future, presenting the ‘primitive’ as a going back to origins, whether ancestral, animal, or cultural, in an attempt to find out how to live better in a world in crisis or to question its values.
Other artists in the exhibition include Sarah Contos, Mikala Dwyer, Graham Fletcher, David Griggs, Fiona Hall, Newell Harry, Siri Hayes, Brendan Huntley, Jess Johnson, Dylan Martorell, , Sanne Mestrom, TV Moore, Michelle Nikou, Ricky Swallow and Rohan Wealleans.