Australian Artists Residency Program

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

We are proud to introduce the 12 Australian artists who will participate in an intensive residency program for our 30th Kaldor Public Art Project, Marina Abramović: In Residence.

Marina Abramović hand selected these 12 residents from an initial long list of 65 performance practitioners, researched and compiled by co-curators Sophie O’Brien and Emma Pike. The 12 artists come from diverse fields of creative practice spanning the performing and visual arts, experimental theatre, dance, choreography and digital media. Each participant challenges performance traditions and experiments with long-durational performance, intensive physical practice, improvisation or public participation.

The selected participants are: Natalie Abbott (Melbourne); Frances Barrett (Sydney); Clark Beaumont comprised of Sarah Clark and Nicole Beaumont (Brisbane); Lottie Consalvo (Newcastle); Nicola Gunn (Melbourne); George Khut (Sydney); Sarah-Jane Norman (Berlin & the Blue Mountains); Sarah Rodigari (Sydney); Christian Thompson (London); and zin, comprised of Harriet Gillies and Roslyn Helper (Sydney).

The Residency Artists will be living on site, upstairs at Pier 2/3, where they will be participating in workshops with Abramović, contributing to the daily public program, and working towards their own creative practice. Members of the public are encouraged to spend time with the residency artists learning about their practices and experiences with Abramović.

Designed by Harry Seidler & Associates Architects, the residency space will be open to the public between 12 noon and 7pm daily. Each day at 6pm, the residency artists will present talks, workshops and events which will present their creative practice and experience of the program to the public.

The public will be able to follow the Residency Program through our active online platform which will feature daily updates from the artists as they progress through the program. Subscribe to our mailing list and follow us on social media to stay up to date with the launch of this platform and the full program. 

NATALIE ABBOTT creates sensory performance experiences. She is committed to the idea that everything is choreography, including light, sound, movement and design, and she utilises this vision when devising work. Natalie has been making her own work; touring throughout Europe, Asia and America; and working with independent choreographers and visual artists in Melbourne, the UK and New York. Natalie is a collaborator for the DEEP SOULFUL SWEATS (fantasy light yoga project) at CHUNKY MOVE, and has recently been invited to FOLA and Next Wave Festival opening party, 2014. She recently spoke alongside Stelarc on a panel ART and the BODY at the Wheeler Centre for Ideas for the Festival of Live Art in Melbourne.

Natalie aims to work through the concept of failure throughout the residency, using repetitive movement and vocal exercises to investigate a new physicality reached through exhaustion. She is intrigued by moments where failure generates honest problem solving within a performance, generating a kind of ‘authenticity’. Natalie is also interested in experimenting with the relationship between light and sound through choreography in the absence of the performer throughout the program.

Above: Natalie Abbott, MAXIMUM, 2014. Photo: Courtesy the artist.

is a Sydney-based artist whose practice explores performance through symbolic and direct action. Barrett’s work is informed by queer and feminist methodologies and recent projects have taken the form of body-based live actions, endurance performance and sonic experimentation. Since 2005 Barrett has worked as part of the performance and video collective Brown Council whose work interrogates modes of collaboration and the history of feminist art practices.

From 2009-13 Barrett was Co-Director of Serial Space, a space that was dedicated to supporting and presenting live and experimental art forms. In 2014, she presented work as part of Day for Night at Performance Space (Sydney), SafARI (Sydney), Tiny Stadiums Festival (Sydney) and Restaging Restaging at Alaska Projects (Sydney). In 2015 she will be performing work at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art (Sydney) and Australian Experimental Art Foundation (Adelaide), while also curating Haunting at Firstdraft (Sydney). She is currently Curator of Contemporary Performance at Campbelltown Arts Centre and host of FBI Radio arts show, Canvas.

Above: Frances Barrett, The 12-Hour Revolution, live performance, 12hr duration, documentation of performance at Sydney Guild, Sydney. Photo: Alex Wisser


is the Brisbane-based artistic collaboration of Nicole Beaumont and Sarah Clark. Through live performance, video and installation works, they investigate ideas and constructs surrounding identity, female subjectivity, intimacy and interpersonal relationships. They are typically the subjects for their work, and often use their collaboration as a proxy for relationships in general. Since forming in 2010, the duo have presented live performances, videos and installations, nationally and internationally. Notably, in 2013, Clark Beaumont exhibited in Kaldor Public Art Project’s 13 Rooms, curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist & Klaus Biesenbach. In 2014, they were selected as the QAGOMA Melville Haysom Memorial Art Scholarship recipient, received Highly Commended at the Churchie National Emerging Art Prize and held a solo exhibition at Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery. Recently, they have presented live performances at the Institute of Modern Art (Brisbane), the Australian Experimental Art Foundation (Adelaide), Monash University Museum of Art (Melbourne) and Queensland University of Technology Art Museum as part of Performance Now, curated by Roselee Goldberg. Later this year, the duo will exhibit in ‘GOMA Q: Queensland Contemporary Art’ at The Gallery of Modern Art.

Above: Clark Beaumont, Coexisting, 2013. Performed for Kaldor Public Art Project 27:
13 Rooms, curated by Klaus Biesenbach and Hans Ulrich Obrist. Photo: Jamie North

      LOTTIE CONSALVO’S practice traverses performance, video, photography, installation, painting and sculpture; she explores emotional and psychological conditions. Created from fragments of the everyday and fractures from significant life events, her work deals with tragedy and longing. In her long-durational and endurance-based performances, Lottie endures discomfort both physically and psychologically. She re-lives past events where audiences often witnesses her undergoing a psychological change in real time. In Lottie's most recent live performances at Alaska Projects, Tiny Stadiums Live Art Festival, The Lock-Up, Newcastle, and Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery, her works positioned her in seemingly comfortable domestic environments almost still or moving occasionally, however often slumped and in discomfort. In these performances, tragedy, desire and longing are all present. Consalvo also makes what she calls 'life performances'. Her most recent being Compartmentalise 2013-2014, a year-long performance where the artist lived with minimal possessions in an attempt to gain psychological control after a significant life shift.

Above: Lottie Consalvo, I mouthed I love you, 2014. Photo: Courtesy the artist.


is a first-person artist. She directs herself, performs herself and reveals herself. Sometimes she even tells the truth. As a performance maker she finds parallels between personal experiences and larger social realities; her work uses subversive humour to reflect on and respond to contemporary culture, people and places. Gunn uses a multi-disciplinary approach to explore modes of performance and often makes work consistent with post-modern types of metafiction – works that put or display the idea of 'truth in fiction’ and ‘fiction in truth.’ To do this, her work tries to be open-ended using non-linear narratives and the juxtaposition of different genres and artforms to show continual slippages of self. Nicola’s artistic practice is committed to institutional critique, social engagement and generating works that activate the public sphere by questioning old ways of being or proposing new ones. She critically reflects on the role of performance in theatres, to examine power relations in existing organisations and to consider the relevance and social function of art itself.

Nicola’s work has been presented at, among others, the Melbourne Festival, Brisbane Festival, Melbourne Theatre Company NEON Festival, Dublin Theatre Festival, Festival de Keuze (Rotterdam, NL), Vitalstatistix, Theatre Works, and – with choreographer Jo Lloyd – at the NGV, Gertrude Contemporary and West Space; she has received commissions from Theatre Works, Malthouse Theatre and Performing Lines/Mobile States. In 2013 Gunn was the recipient of an Australia Council Creative Australia Fellowship.

Above: Nicola Gunn, In Spite of Myself, 2013.
Photo: Courtesy the artist

      GEORGE POONKHIN KHUT is an Australian artist and academic at UNSW Art and Design, working across the fields of electronic and participatory art, interaction design and health. For the past 12 years he has been working with biofeedback technologies, creating intimate, body-focussed participatory artworks, that re-frame our experiences and representations of embodiment, presentness and body-mind interactions.

In 2012 Khut was awarded the Queensland Art Gallery, Gallery of Modern Art, National New Media Art Award, for his heart rate controlled interactive artwork Distillery: Waveforming – a work developed as part of his residency at the Children’s Hospital at Westmead (Sydney), where he collaborated with Brain Injury Specialist Dr Angela Morrow on a heart rate controlled application for use with children undergoing painful procedures. Recent exhibitions include The Heart Library Project, exhibited this year in the Group Therapy exhibition at FACT (Liverpool, U.K.), and MoCA Taipei (Taiwan, 2012), ThetaLab presented at ISEA2013 (Sydney), and Cardiomorphologies presented at the Biennale of Electronic Arts Perth, 2007, and InBetweenTime 2006, at Arnolfini (U.K.).

Right: George Poonkhin Khut and James Brown, “AlphaLab”/“ThetaLab”, creative neurofeedback participatory event, 2013. Photo: James P Brown


is a cross-disciplinary artist and writer. Her practice is grounded in performance and her core interest is in the body: the body as a spectacle of truth and a theatre of fantasy; a siphon of personal and collective memory; an organism with which we are infinitely familiar and eternally estranged; a site which is equally loaded and empty of meaning; where histories, narratives, desires and discourses converge and collapse. Much of her work is long-durational and site-based incorporating elements of physical risk, endurance or duress. The works shift in scale from large public installations to discreet works for single audience members. Her work is participatory, where the audience is given a direct offering, an invitation, or a critical choice upon which they are compelled to act.

An alumna of Sydney's PACT Centre for Emerging Artists, Norman's artistic trajectory has been informed by numerous practices, disciplines and methodologies. Beginning her career as an ensemble performer in both scripted and devised theatre, she also studied a variety of physical disciplines including Suzuki Method, Feldenkrais and Bodyweather. She trained for several years in Dance Improvisation and Bodyweather with Dancer/Choreographer Martin Del Amo, and following that travelled to Japan where she trained intensively in Butoh with Ajaki Maro and his company Dairakudakan and with Yoshito Ohno at the Kazuo Ohno studio. She has also performed and trained with Guillermo Gomez Peña and his company, La Pocha Nostra.

Above: Sarah-Jane Norman, Corpus Nullius/Blood Country, Unsettling Suite, 2013.
Photo: Courtesy the artist.

      SARAH RODIGARI creates performances that address economies of exchange pertaining to socio-political engagement, shared authorship and new institutional critique. Working at the intersections of theatre, visual art and social practice her method is responsive and context specific. Recent projects take the form of lecture, text, video, collaboration and curation.

Rodigari has presented work at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Australia, Melbourne International Arts Festival, South Project (Indonesia), PACT Zollverein (Germany), Centre for Contemporary Art Glasgow, The National Review of Live Art (UK), Anti-Contemporary Arts Festival (Finland), and SOMA (Mexico City). Sarah has a BA (Hons) in Sociology (UNSW), a Masters in Fine Art (RMIT) and is currently a PhD candidate in Creative Art at the University of Wollongong. She recently published a chapter on performance art, and sympathetic magic for the publication Travel and Transformation and co-edited the book Going Down, an anthology of contemporary Sydney performance. Rodigari is a founding member of the collective Field Theory; who make and support art projects that cross disciplines, shift contexts and seek new strategies for intervening in the public sphere.

Photo: Courtesy the artist


is an Australian born, London-based photographic, conceptual and performance artist who’s work explores notions of identity, cultural hybridity and history. Formally trained as a sculptor, Thompson’s multidisciplinary practice engages mediums such as photography, video, sculpture, performance and sound. His work is primarily focuses on the performative exploration of identity, sexuality, gender, race, ritual and memory. In his performances and photographic works he inhabits a range of personas achieved through handcrafted costumes and carefully orchestrated poses and backdrops and is known for his evocative photographic self portraits and video works.

In 2010 Thompson made history when he was awarded the Inaugural Charlie Perkins Scholarship and became the first Aboriginal Australian to be admitted into the University of Oxford in its 900-year history. He holds a Doctorate of Philosophy (Fine Art), Trinity College, University of Oxford, Britain, Master of Theatre, Amsterdam School of Arts, Das Arts, The Netherlands, Masters of Fine Art (Sculpture) RMIT University and Honours (Sculpture) RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia and a Bachelor of Fine Art from the University of Southern Queensland, Toowoomba, Queensland.

Right: Christian Thompson, Tree of Knowledge, Art Gallery of NSW, 2013. Photo: Courtesy the artist.

      ZIN is the artist partnership of Harriet Gillies and Roslyn Helper. Formed in 2011, zin's work focuses on the power of experience by combining immersive, visceral and hybrid-art elements. Through their work they are interested in developing methodologies and concepts that deal with the public sphere, immaterial performance modes, large-scale execution, site specificity, audience immersion and activation. zin continuously redefine the audience-artist relationship by creating generative environments that encourage new ways of thinking and interacting.

zin have presented work at PACT, I’ll Have What She’s Having, 2015, Firstdraft, Karaoke For Wankers, 2015, Sydney Festival's Parramatta Opening Night Party, Take A Shot, 2014, the Festival of Live Art in Melbourne, Make The Call, 2014, Underbelly Arts Lab and Festival, zin’s Party Mode, 2013, City of Darwin's National Youth Week Festival, Make The Call, 2013, and Tiny Stadiums Festival, The Dictator’s Ball, 2013. zin received a JUMP mentorship grant from the Australia Council in 2013 and have participated in residencies and programs across Australia. Gillies attained a Graduate Diploma of Performing Arts (Directing) at NIDA and Helper completed her Masters in Arts Politics at Tisch School of the Arts, New York University.

Right: zin, The OAFFICE, The Cube, Oxford Arts Factory, 2013. Photo: Courtesy the artists.