Katthy Cavaliere Fellowship | Media Release 11 Dec 2019

In an unprecedented collaboration, ACCA, Carriageworks and Mona will present concurrent exhibitions of new work by three women artists: Frances Barrett (ACCA), Giselle Stanborough (Carriageworks) and Sally Rees (Mona), from March 2020.

Announced in October 2018, Suspended Moment: The Katthy Cavaliere Fellowship awarded $100,000 to each of the three artists to create new work. Made possible by the estate of the late, Italian-born Australian artist, Katthy Cavaliere (1972-2012), each artist’s ambitious new project is focused at the intersection of installation and performance art practice.

The Katthy Cavaliere fellowship works are as follows:

27 March – 14 June 2020 Carriageworks
“When they see me, I see me.” – Giselle Stanborough

At Carriageworks, Giselle Stanborough’s Cinopticon will contemporise philosopher Michel Foucault’s theory of the ‘panopticon’: instead of the few watching the many, today we watch each other and the few. In Cinopticon, Stanborough will examine web-based narcissism, corporate surveillance and the opacity of social media algorithms to explore how these coalesce to lead us through problematic terrain. Stanborough will work with her own personal online archive to create an immersive performance installation where audiences will see their reflection in unpredictable ways.

Cinopticon will employ sensory affective elements to observe how people experience stimulations for the gaze, the voice and the body. It will mimic the threshold between the pleasure and pain of the sensation of being watched and of watching others.

Searchlights, sculptural forms, diagrams, and digital and mirrored surfaces reflect a sensory iteration of the social media experience drawing on performative online platforms such as TikTok, Snapchat and Instagram. Cinopticon will incorporate a series of performance activations by Stanborough, and an invitation to take selfies.

Carriageworks Director of Programs and the curator of Cinopticon, Daniel Mudie Cunningham, says: ‘The work of Giselle Stanborough probes technology’s unsettling mediation of self in an age of image saturation and algorithmic manipulation. With an affinity for Katthy Cavaliere’s performance of self, Cinopticon is her most ambitious presentation to date and promises to be an experimental performance installation questioning the power dynamics of spectatorship between self and other.’

4 April – 8 June 2020
Australian Centre for Contemporary Art (ACCA)
A project led by Frances Barrett with Nina Buchanan, Hayley Forward, Brian Fuata, Del Lumanta and Sione Teumohenga.

At ACCA, Frances Barrett will extend the parameters of the Fellowship’s solo commission to present new sonic compositions and live performances by multiple artists. Drawing on her background in performance, curating and collaborative models of making, Barrett will create a major sound installation in collaboration with Hayley Forward and Brian Fuata. It will be presented alongside specially-commissioned sound compositions by artists Nina Buchanan, Del Lumanta and Sione Teumohenga, whose works collectively address concepts including community building, healing and new environmental consciousness.

A ‘meatus’ is an opening or passage leading to the interior of the body, such as the ear or mouth – a juncture between the internal and external, where the body opens itself to the world. For this project ACCA’s galleries are conceived as a form of meatus for the audience to enter; a passage in which to experience multiple voices, embodied knowledges, affective territories, deep listening and relational practices.

Meatus can be understood as concrete flesh, raw speculation and a hole poetic: it is a performative restaging of the body that pushes beyond the visual and representational. Composed as an immersive installation of sound and light, Frances Barrett’s exhibition constructs the gallery as a body that echoes, bleeds and leaks. Through the active, attentive and embodied presence of the audience, listening becomes the primary mode for this body to be encountered and felt. Within the context of Meatus, this form of deep listening makes porous boundaries between bodies, inside and outside, the self and surrounds.

‘Whilst developing an intensely sonic and polyphonic installation as the lead commission for the Katthy Cavaliere Fellow at ACCA, Frances Barrett is also using the opportunity as a platform for her curatorial practice, and in the spirit of collaboration and generosity has extended the invitation to other artists and musicians to create new work in dialogue. The result, Meatus, will be an audacious, experimental engagement with sound and performance within the context of the gallery,’ said ACCA Senior Curator, Annika Kristensen.

8 April 2020 – 10 August 2020 Mona

At Mona, Tasmanian artist Sally Rees will exhibit a new body of work centred around the ‘crone’. Adopting this folkloric archetype, Rees will challenge the perceived invisibility of ageing women in contemporary society, seeking to redefine the female elder as a powerful and transgressive figure.

In the development of this project, Rees has called upon her network of ‘crones’—her mother, friends and colleagues—who have inspired and forged a path for her. Being vulnerable and seeking support is a source of strength for Rees, something that she took for granted in her younger years.

The exhibition is made up of a series of videos that are transformed using hand-painted animations. This includes video portraits of her ‘crones’ placed throughout the gallery, whose bird-like calls create a fearless chorus, and a large, double-sided projection showing video portraits of the artist in full Crone attire—one alone and one with her mother. The artist will also undertake a durational performance that will end at the museum, marking her 50th birthday, in August 2020.

Mona Collections and Exhibitions Director, and curator of Crone, Nicole Durling said: ‘Sally Rees is fearless in using herself as the central material for her art, which is reminiscent of how Katthy Cavaliere approached her work. With Crone, Sally is actively engaging with her own ageing process, using it as a source of power, creating work that harnesses the senescent self. It is inspiring to see someone facing the world so bravely, confidently and honestly.’

The artists in the Katthy Cavaliere Fellowship were selected by a panel comprised of leadership and curatorial representatives from the presenting institutions, including Daniel Mudie Cunningham (Director of Programs,

Carriageworks), David Walsh (Founder, Mona) and Nicole Durling (Director, Collections and Exhibitions, Mona) and Max Delany (Artistic Director/CEO ACCA) and Annika Kristensen (Senior Curator, ACCA).

In announcing the individual projects for the Suspended Moment: Katthy Cavaliere Fellowship exhibitions, the Panel noted: ‘Each of these works are immensely brave, ground breaking and career defining, and each are fitting of the legacy of Katthy Cavaliere, who was determined to push the limits in her own career in a way that was raw and deeply emotional. For audiences, this suite of exhibitions offers an insight into the practices of some of the most exciting artists working at the nexus of performance and art in Australia.’

Media Contacts
Carriageworks: Articulate Julia Barnes julia@articulatepr.com.au  or Kym Elphinstone kym@articulatepr.com.au 
ACCA: Katrina Hall katrina.hall@acca.melbourne
MONA: Emily Philippou emily.philippou@mona.net.au

Learn more about Giselle Stanborough: Cinopticon.