13 September 2010
DreamWorlds come alive in Beijing
Anita Fontaine, Knightshift, 2009, video game modification.
Chunky Move, Mortal Engine, 2008, performer Charmene Yap, photo Andrew Curtis.
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A collection of short moving image works has opened in the Chinese capital, curated by an RMIT University adjunct professor.
DreamWorlds: Australian Moving Image will play until 16 October on the spectacular 27m outdoor media screen in Sanlitun Village.
The event is sponsored by RMIT, the Australia International Cultural Council, the Australia-China Council and Swire Properties.
Adjunct Professor Melinda Rackham, former Director of the Australian Network for Art and Technology, said DreamWorlds presented unique perspectives from eight leading Australian artists on timeless themes of intimacy, isolation and the imaginary.
"Forged in a vast island continent embraced by sea, these dreamy realms will be encountered by Chinese audiences going about their daily lives.
"DreamWorlds is an exciting opportunity to view Australia’s most innovative and thought-provoking moving image art in a major Beijing public space."
Adjunct Professor Rackham is an award-winning new media artist, writer, producer and curator, with a background in sculpture, installation and performance.
For the Beijing event she has brought together a selection of the most outstanding Australian media artists working today, many showing for the first time in China.
The short video works move between meditations on daily life to fantastical computer creations, ranging from Anita Fontaine's rebellious sense of play and a taste for magic in a modified video game to Daniel Crook's rhythmic stretching and compacting of time and space in dreamy urban scapes shot in China and Australia.
Jess MacNeil traces the abstract movement of swimmers through the undulating waters of the Bondi Iceberg ocean pool, Kate Richards flies through a universe contained within a game engine, while composer Peter Miller generates delicate digital microscopic life forms.
DreamWorlds includes exclusive short editions of the integrated media/dance/laser/sound performance of Mortal Engine by leading dance company Chunky Move and of Warwick Thornton's Aboriginal film Samson and Delilah (winner of the Camera d'Or at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival). Mr Thornton was last month named RMIT Communicator of the Year.
Dr Troy Innocent's contribution, autograf, generates tags by recombining marks and gestures used in graffiti tagging. The languages generated by this process are both familiar and alien; its tags look like letters but remain indecipherable.
Warwick Thornton, Samson and Delilah: Marissa Gibson (Delilah) and Rowan MacNamara (Samson), 2009.
The big screen in Beijing, home to Australian moving images for six weeks.