VENUE: UNSW GALLERIES
listen_UP is a haunting, meditative soundscape, which emanated out of Professor Judy Atkinson’s ground-breaking work on trauma.
The Big Anxiety Commission – World Premiere.
The installation features the work of artists: r e a, Nardi Simpson, Missi Mel Pesa and Andrew Belletty who collaborated with Judy to create an aural campfire – a place where stories are shared, listened to, understood and then reflected or meditated on. In culture the campfire is a creative learning and teaching space where elders pass on ‘their’ knowledge and stories to listener’s young and old. Judy is our ‘story-teller’ and we are her crew so kick-back and listen_UP.
r e a
r e a is an artist | curator | activist | academic | cultural educator | creative thinker who is engaged in an arts-lead, research-based practice. r e a is a descendant from the Gamilaraay/Wailwan/Biripi, Indigenous nations of Australia, located the central western region of New South Wales. r e a has received numerous scholarships and grants throughout her creative and academic career, these include: a Samstag International Visual Arts Scholarship, a New Media Arts Fellowship from the Australia Council for the Arts; and a Fulbright Scholarship. She has completed a B.F.A from the University of NSW, School of Art and Design; a M.A. in Visual Arts from Australian National University; and a M.Sc., in Digital Imaging and Design, from New York University and most recently she completed a Doctorate in Visual Anthropology, UNSW Art & Design.
r e a’s ongoing research focuses on creating new Indigenous perspectives, which disrupt the colonial narrative by prioritising Indigenous voices.
r e a is involved in ongoing collaborative research projects with Concordia University, SSHRC Sensory Entanglements is exploring: New Cross Cultural and Cross-Disciplinary Directions in the Creation and Evaluation of Multi-Sensorial Experience: an innovative research-creation program, which designs and evaluates artistic objects and installations that engage with the human senses from an inter-cultural perspective; and the UNSW ARC Discovery Project Cultural Sensorium: An Ethnography of the Senses. r e a has recently joined the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Unit at the University of Queensland as a lecturer.
Judy Atkinson (Emeritus Professor – SCU) identifies as a Jiman / Bundjalung (Aboriginal Australian) woman. With a PhD from QUT, her primary academic and research focus is in the area of violence, relational trauma, and healing for Indigenous, and indeed all peoples. She was awarded the Carrick (Neville Bonner) Award in 2006 for her Innovative Curriculum Development and Teaching Practice, and in 2011 the Fritz Redlich award for Mental Health and Human Rights from the Harvard University Global Mental Health Trauma and Recovery program. Her book: Trauma Trails – Recreating Songlines: The transgenerational effects of Trauma in Indigenous Australia, was sub-listed for a human rights award. Judy retired at the end of 2010, so she could focus on working with communities in Australia and Papua New Guinea in trauma informed and trauma specific educational -healing work, which she calls educaring
Nardi Simpson is a Yuwaalaraay writer, musician, storyteller and educator from NSW’s north west freshwater plains. As a member of Indigenous duo Stiff Gins, Nardi has travelled nationally and internationally for the past 20 years, performing in the US, UK, Ireland, Canada, Vietnam and the Pacific Islands. Nardi is the recipient of the 2018 Black&Write! Indigenous Writers Fellowship with the state library of Queensland and is currently editing her debut novel, Song of the Crocodile. Nardi is a participant in Ngaria Burria Indigenous Composures initiative and she is the musical director of Barayagal, a cross-cultural choir run out of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music in 2019. Nardi is also a Gamilaraay Language teacher and cultural consultant heavily involved in the teaching and sharing of culture in both her Sydney and Yuwaalaraay communities.
Missi Mel Pesa
Missi Mel Pesa is an Australian artist of Croatian heritage who works across music, sound and film to make experimental audiovisual works based around the voices of animals, humans, the piano and machines. Missi’s work is influenced by altered states of attention achieved through meditation, which are then used to reconfigure piano compositions through organic and found sounds. Missi’s most recent work is a short experimental film, In Bocca al Lupo (In the mouth of the wolf), built around a soundtrack composed of richly layered voices of wolves, women and prepared piano, juxtaposed against images of wild spaces in Croatia and Australia. Missi’s work has featured at the International Experimental Art Camp in Rijeka, Croatia in 2017 and a 7.2 channel soundscape for a multichannel audiovisual performance show, which has toured in Australia, Slovenia, Netherlands and New Zealand 2017-2019.
Dr. Andrew Belletty
Dr. Andrew Belletty is an Indian-born Australian sound artist and researcher, working with vibro-tactile materiality of sound, across visual, performance and media arts. His work creates intimate, tactile listening experiences by redesigning images and sounds of country as flexible experiential forms through both gallery and site-specific installations. Andrew’s multilayered, experimental and site responsive works draw from Indigenous knowledges and practices which connect and heal bodies and country, reconfiguring audio-visual technologies to create a decolonised techno space. As founding member of acclaimed Australian band Yothu Yindi, Andrew works internationally as a cinematic sound designer with hundreds of screen credits to his name. Andrew holds a PhD in Visual Anthropology, Art, Design & Media from the National Institute for Experimental Arts, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.
Gail Kelly (aka abi) has directed and devised contemporary performance projects across a range of artforms some of which include: youth theatre, multicultural theatre, community theatre, contemporary performance, circus and physical theatre Gail has also devised a series of hybrid, cross-art form and interdisciplinary contemporary Australian performance projects and devised and directed solo physical performance projects in Australia and the UK. Gail has worked in film and radio and she was the director of ACAPTA (the Australian Circus and Physical Theatre Association) from 2007 – 2015. Gail was a member of Victoria’s Green Room’s Contemporary and Experimental Performance Panel from 2009 – 2015 and she is currently an active member of the Helpmann’s Dance and Physical Theatre Panel. Most recently Gail was the creative producer and project manager for The Fair Ground Project an integrated circus arts project: http://thefairgroundproject.org/ and she has worked with r e a on all her new media /visual arts projects and installations over the past fifteen years.