Art in Public Space students have had the unique opportunity to engage with community members to create a light and sound festival.
Produced and curated by Clare McCracken with assistance from Yandell Walton, Fiona Hillary, Jo Norster, Millie Catlin, Bernadette Jennings, Michael Merrett, Hatice Yilmaz and Chris Bold.
Students from the Master of Arts (Art in Public Space) and Bachelor of Arts (Fine Art) worked to create interactive sound and light installations around the Richmond Housing Estate as part of the inaugural Space Between Light Festival.
The premise of the Space Between Light Festival was to revive the area around Victoria’s largest housing estate and illustrate how public art can be used to shift perceptions of safety on the estate.
Clare McCracken, lecturer in the School of Art, said the project allowed students to engage with the local community in a meaningful way.
“The project continues RMIT’s long-term engagement in researching the role of art in shifting perceptions of safety in public space,” McCracken said.
“Activating spaces at night is a really great way of getting the public to see the space differently, and also getting them to feel safe and realise that these sites are safe.
“We’re specifically looking at how we can revitalise these sites to improve the way people interact with them and react to them after dark.”
RMIT students, alumni and academic staff from RMIT’s Centre for Art, Society and Transformation worked closely with residents to develop a series of original works for the interactive installations.
After submitting proposals for site-specific installations, 50 original works were chosen by a committee of residents of the estate and representatives from the Department of Human Services for display during the festival.
Installations included jump-rope made from a string of lights, animated large-scale portraits and interactive audiovisual fittings.