The Harbour International Arts Residency’s ‘Sonic Tides’ was a four week creative laboratory bringing together established and emerging artists from Australia, Indonesia and Timor Leste, during July-August 2015 in Darwin.
The residency project aimed to foster creative dialogue between Asia and Australia, with a focus on practical and conceptual research between international artists Jompet Kuswidananto from Indonesia, Mariano Goncalves from Timor Leste, Australian artists Dale Gorfinkel and Weniki Hensch.
As Project Manager, I assisted these four artists to come together to create, experiment, collaborate and explore each other’s concepts and working practices. I was also interested in making specific enquiries for my own research interests in how artmaking creates engagement with learning and opens up dialogues – how art can be ‘applied’: to disrupt, resist and re-stitch relationships. ‘Sonic Tides’ opened up a space for relationships, voices and learning in this particular location.
For instance, Jompet Kuswidananto brought to the residency a background in social and political science, interests in theatre and music, and interpreting cultural historical texts. The project for Jompet provoked memories, discussion and understanding of how the Suharto regime impacted not only Indonesia, but East Timor: “I met Mariano here, and he is the first Timorese artist I’ve met. This has directed me to think about East Timor – what experiences and memories we might share – and has influenced my work for this project. My work for this project explores the fragility of memory, perspective and reality.”
This intercultural and trans-disciplinary art project was an important opportunity for the artists in that it offered an experimental space to freely play, share and make.
Practical outcomes of the residency featured the works as a part of the 2015 Darwin Festival program, and secured local ABC media coverage (see http://www.dvaa.net.au/the-harbour-international-arts-residency-gallery/).
The project was developed by DVAA artist run space in partnership with the Darwin Festival http://www.darwinfestival.org.au/show/the-harbour-international-arts-residency/ and Charles Darwin University (CDU).
As a CDU International Graduate Centre of Education Masters student, the project also enabled me to make observations of how art-making creates engagement with learning, opening up transcultural dialogue and understandings (https://cdu.edu.au/igce/news/sonic-tides).