VENUE: EPICentre, UNSW Art and Design, Paddington Campus
A unique immersive installation in the EPICentre DomeLab, the Harmonic Oscillator is the outcome of a three year project which placed a contemporary artist inside a functioning children’s hospital to explore the role that contemporary arts practice can play in trauma reduction.
Based upon the mass of research that shows that no hospital has met the World Health Organisations recommendations for sound levels, The Harmonic Oscillator explores the idea that the amount of sound in these spaces is leading to increases in medication, increase in length of stay and the physiological effects of stress, anxiety and disturbed sleep.
Placing you in the thick of it, on a hospital bed in the centre of a room, the Harmonic Oscillator surrounds the ‘patient’ with a cloying, grinding 24/7 soundscape. Replicating the never-ending barrage to the senses one experiences when sleeping in a hospital ward, it is an overwhelming and intense experience.
Through the Harmonic Oscillator, artist Vic McEwan asks the question, ‘Is this the best way to heal?’
Vic McEwan and Clive Parkinson present and discuss radical interventions by contemporary artists in health contexts. Part of The Big Anxiety After Dark 28 September.
This project is supported by Create NSW, Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, Arts for Health and the Manchester School of Art.
This project has been assisted by the Australian government through the Department of Communication and the Arts’ Catalyst—Australian Arts and Culture Fund.
Vic McEwan is the Artistic Director of The Cad Factory, an artist led organisation creating an international program of new, immersive and experimental work guided by authentic exchange, ethical principles, people and place. Vic’s practice works with sound, video, installation and performance with a particular interest in site-specific work. He is interested in creating new dynamics by working with diverse partners and exploring difficult themes within the lived experience of communities and localities. Vic was the recipient of the Inaugural Arts NSW Regional Fellowship 2014/15. He sits on the NSW/ACT Arts/Health State Leadership Group and is a board member of Music NSW.