Social Art Projects

My practice is rooted in materiality, where the materials and processes selected are chosen to best articulate my artistic vision.  At times, engagement through human interaction and social discourse are the best means to portray my artistic vision, where the social engagement is the artwork. In some of my social art projects, the photographic documentation of the social engagement is the artwork and the performance aspect is considered secondary. As the 'social act' is unannounced and it is only by chance that one would encounter the performance. Other forms of social art include in my practice are Street Art, Correspondence Art, and Community Based Art via workshops.


COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT

Frequent Stopping VI, (daily walk during Covid-19), 2020

Frequent Stopping VI,( daily walk during Covid-19), 2021 draws upon the Frequent Stopping series regarding borders, boundaries and the marking of space.  In this work, borders and boundaries are extended outside of the public realm and into ‘personal space’ to create a visual border by armouring myself with hi-vis safety vest to protect myself during a global pandemic.  In Stage 4 of lockdown, the Australian government regulations permitted individuals to go outside once a day for daily exercise and grocery shopping and to always maintain a 1.5m distance.  This work documents my daily pandemic walk in my local area in Sydney, Australia and the reactions of the people I encountered in trying to keep the 1.5m social distancing rule.


borders, boundaries, people, individual, state, social distancing, Indigenous art

Frequent Stopping VI,( daily walk during  Covid-19), 2021, 2 of 16 photographs, 40x50cm, digital print. Photo: Anke Stacker

borders, boundaries, social distancing, Indigenous art

Frequent Stopping VI,( daily walk during  Covid-19), 2021, 3 of 16 photographs, 40x50cm, digital print. Photo: Anke Stacker

borders, boundaries, people, individual, state, social distancing, Indigenous art

Frequent Stopping VI,( daily walk during  Covid-19), 2021, 9 of 16 photographs, 40x50cm, digital print. Photo: Anke Stacker

borders, boundaries, people, individual, state, social distancing, Indigenous art

Frequent Stopping VI,( daily walk during  Covid-19), 2021, 10 of 16 photographs, 40x50cm, digital print. Photo: Anke Stacker




COMMUNITY BASED WORKSHOPS


Collage of Indigenization, 2013


The Collage of Indigenization was an art project conducted from 2013-2017, inaugurated in Alice Springs, Northern Territory by Artback NT and involved collage workshops throughout the Northern Territory and Western Australia with various Indigenous communities. As well as collage workshops in Sydney and parts of Canada.


 

Participants were invited to make a collage on what it means to be Indigenous today - whether social, political, cultural, and psychological. The project aimed to put to rest previous historical and cultural misrepresentations of Indigenous people as primitive, shamans, ‘other’, un-modern, and not having a tradition of art. This project drew upon the social art action of the late 1960s Collage of Indignation as part of the Angry Arts Week organised by the Artists and Writers Protests and featured over 300 artists making collages in protest of the Vietnam War. 


Overall, there are approximately 110 collages created, some the very first collages made by artists within Australian Aboriginal art centres.  Names of artists are withheld so that the focus is on the action rather than creator though, participants are included in the room sheet when exhibited.


Collage workshops were conducted at various venues throughout Australia and Canada:


Alberta College of Art and Design, 2017, Calgary, Alberta

Decolonizing Conference, 2016, University of Toronto, ON

Roebourne Primary School, WA

Roebourne High School, WA

Barkly Artist Camp, Tennant Creek, NT

Ngurratjuta Many Hands, Alice Springs,NT

MCA Artbar with Tony Albert, MCA, Sydney, NSW

Yamaji Aboriginal Art Center, Geraldton, WA, 

GSAC Streeties, Geraldton, WA, 

Mullewa Indigenous Women's Art Center, Mullewa,WA

Participant, Collage of Indigenization, collage workshop in Alice Spring, 2013, mixed media on Fabriano paper. Photo: Rolande Souliere

collage, collage of indigenization, Alice Springs, Indigenous art, contemporary art, culture

Participant, Collage of Indigenization, collage workshop in Alice Spring, 2013, mixed media on Fabriano paper. Photo: Rolande Souliere

 

COMMUNITY BANNERS

Kookum Power, 2019

"The Indigenous Womxn Banner project", curated by Red Embers and installed at Allan Gardens, Toronto in 2019, the 13 large scaled banners honours Grandmother Mother the leader of Feminine life and healer in Indigenous cultures. The 13 banners represent the 13 Grandmothers with the Lunar System and symbolize an intervention into the Murdered, missing Indigenous womxn (MMIW) inquiry by increasing awareness of disproportionate violence experienced by Indigenous womxn in Turtle Island (North America). It is estimated that over 5000 Indigenous women have been murdered or are missing….


indigenous, banners, womxn, mmiw, Embers, first nations, contemporary art, Allen Gardens, Toronto

Kookum Power, 2018,with Red Embers at Allen Gardens, Toronto,  acrylic paint, primer, bells, 3.04 x 1.3m Photo: Lisa Rochon

 

 

STREET ART


Coyote Responds: I Like America and America likes me, 2017, is a commissioned poster project (3) to be used in Or Gallery, Berlin Street art project, curated by Jonathan Middelton. The posters act as an intervention by pasting in unsanctioned public spaces throughout the city streets. 

 

In this work, the intervention brings awareness to the cultural appropriation of First Nations culture in western art by male artists such as Joseph Beuys, Jackson Pollack, and Pablo Picasso.  The posters are a digital reproduction and manipulation of original collage works titled Three of a Kind, 2015-2016. The posters of Beuys, Pollack and Picasso with their orifices beaded over, were pasted throughout the streets in cities of Berlin, Toronto, Winnipeg, Vancouver, and Sydney. 


poster art, paste ups, street art, intervention, Or Gallery, Berlin, wheat paste

Coyote Responds:I like America and America likes me, 2017, paste-ups in Berlin, 1 of 50 public locations, digital poster. Photo: Peter Sebner



CORRESPONDENCE ART


"Society", 2020, draws upon Art Metropole’s history of correspondence art, where every piece of mail posted out of their office, will be stamped with one of five artists’ commissioned work: Lorna Brown, Cathy Busby, Garry Neill Kennedy, Maria Fusco, David Horvitz and myself.  


All outgoing mail is sequentially numbered and in doing so creates open-ended editionsthat reflect Art Metropole’s yearly postal correspondence from June 1, 2020-May 30, 2021.

To receive an envelope, individuals were invited to either: send a letter; a self-adressed stamped envelope or a web order. Also any standard correspondence from Art Metropole would also a work on the envelope or packaging  including, new memberships.


correspondence art, mail art, art metropole, envelopes, art envelopes, rolande souliere, society

Society, artists envelopes commissioned by Art Metropole, 2020, Toronto, Canada Photo: Carson Sharpe