Radical Ecologies at PICA - 31 July - 4 September

Published by: Anarchy PR | 23-Jun-2016
Sensorial and eclectic, Radical Ecologies is an exhibition that invites us to question our complex relationships with our own bodies, each other and the natural world. Featuring new work by Western Australian artists practicing at the intersection of design, performance, film, installation, sound and bio-art, Radical Ecologies acknowledges our continued environmental dystopia, while offering up different approaches of relating to the world. #PICAARTS @pica_perth
Venue: Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts
Address: James Street, Northbridge WA 6003
Date: 31 July - 4 September, 2016
Ticket: Become an ART1000 Donor for as little as $100/month
Web: www.pica.com.au
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While consciously employing and encouraging ethical approaches to production and consumption, these artists use innovative means to bring our attentions to intimate encounters with our ecology and cultures, providing slow spaces for empathy and observation.

Live art encounters, new media and experiments in scent and sound, propose diverse countercultural spaces to inhabit. We are invited to decipher a romance novel rewritten by termites, to lay down with bees, locate a complex olfactory landscape and listen to whispered ecosexual confessions. These "encountered" works, alongside their more traditional counterparts, create moments of perceptual and bodily confusion, work within cultural frictions and reframe interspecies relationships through the lenses of sexuality, care and cruelty.

Exhibiting Artists & Their Artworks

Matt Aitken and Noel Nannup

Aitken and Nannup's work arises from a collection of audio and video recordings captured during meetings between the pair held at significant sites around the city of Perth. Their work frames a series of meandering conversations which celebrates storytelling, learning and local indigenous culture.

Nathan Beard

Beard will exhibit a collection of ornately decorated ceramic heads of the Thai Buddha, reproduced from photographs of cultural artifacts taken in the British Museum. As such the work explores cultural theft and colonisation, authenticity and the Western gaze. This body of work was created during a recent residency in the ceramics producing city of Jingdezhen in China.

Mike Bianco

Bianco's immersive work is centered on interspecies relationships with a particular focus on the relationship between humans and honeybees. For Radical Ecologies he will present a bed structure which contains an embedded working bee hive. Participants can lie down on the structure and listen to the sound of the hive, providing for a moment of focus and intimacy between humans and bees.

Tim Burns

Prominent multi-disciplinary artist and filmmaker, Tim Burns, will present a selection of his iconic photographic prints featuring exploding landscapes and televisions. He will also present two recent film works which investigate fracking, current affairs, climate change and the surveillance state.

Andrew Christie

Make Sure They Play My Theme Song is a family of string instruments to be played when people pass. These ritualistic objects are designed to be instruments of mourning, memory, improvisation and meditation and Christie's shrine-like family of strings are musical talismans for grief. This work extends Christie's practice as 'A Good Looking Man', a bespoke furniture making business, which also conducts workshops that often have strong social outcomes.

Pony Express

Loren Kronemyer and Ian Sinclair are Pony Express and their Ecosexual Sauna set tongues wagging in Melbourne following their recent exhibition as part of the Next Wave Festival. Ecosexual Bathhouse is an immersive work focusing on the emerging sexual identity in which the biosphere itself is taken as a lover. The sauna is home to the transcribed stories of self-identified ecosexuals, gathered by Pony Express during interviews conducted over a series of workshops. These stories have been recorded and interpreted as whispers through the walls, sharing the experience of ecosexuality in a framework modeled off the clandestine communities of gay saunas over the last five decades.

Steven Finch

Finch's film work documents a series of collaborative workshop performances which attempt to build a religion from the ground up by collaborative means. The result is an exploration of ritual performance, belonging and group dynamics, the production and affirmation of significant objects and the generation of new beliefs.

Cat Jones

Cat Jones presents Somatic Drifts, a series of one on one live experiences which uses touch and audio visual feedback to induce shifts in body perception in the participant. During the live experience the participant will feel the effect of transforming to become other people and entities, increasing the possibility for empathy. A conceptual scent work made using perfumery techniques will also be specifically developed for Radical Ecologies, translating the thematics of the exhibition into a unique and complex olfactory landscape.

Rose Megirian

Great Worth is a collection of vessels made from cast silver and semi-precious stones which have been tarnished and altered in a way that questions their materiality. The works become containers for specially selected plants which need to be maintained by the owner. This introduces a care structure to the objects and extends Rose's practice as the designer behind 'Many Peaks Assembly', whose environmental prerogative is to avoid the disposal of designed objects by finding strategies to build an emotional bond between the object and its owner. Rose will also be dressing PICA gallery staff at PICA Salon Vernissage.

Peter and Molly

Peter Cheng and Molly Biddle present The Superior Animal "“ an ambitious multi-channel video work featuring ritualized encounters between the artists and different animals including leeches and oysters. These interactions offer dramatic and unconventional interpretations of cruelty and compassion.

Rebecca Orchard

Orchard's objects and drawings explore patterns within rocks formed from hundreds of years facing the elements. Her terracotta clay pressings into rocks discovered during walks in the field record the rocks' surfaces while her drawings, which meticulously trace their edges, transforms the rocks' shapes into an elegant topography.

Perdita Philips

Tender Leavings is a mixed-media wall installation containing the fragments of 850 romance novels buried for one year in a desert sand dune. Over the year termites ate away at the books, leaving fragments of text to be reassembled, in turn poetically reframing the simple linear narratives of romance novels. From a distance the work resembles a black and white field painting, but up close the narratives become legible, paralleling the macro and microscopic ways humans see and investigate the natural world.

Mei Saraswati

Movements is a spatial sound work that abstracts audio samplings of water from a rain puddle, the Swan River and a leaking tap "“ exploring the tonal and percussive properties of water. The work encourages the visitor to move around a space, following the way the sound flows from corner to corner in the gallery. A vinyl recording of the work will be available for purchase. This will be highly collectable with an edition of only ten copies available.


Famous for his explorations within bioart and technology, Stelarc presents Rewired/Remixed which examines alternate anatomies of biology, technology and virtuality. For five days during the exhibition Stelarc will undergo a durational performance where his own body will be augmented with a robotic arm and an audiovisual headset which will be controlled by the audience and participants remotely through an online interface. In doing so he will relinquish control of his body and his perceptual field, questioning the limits of the body as a material and as a barrier between the self and others.

Katie West

Indigenous artist Katie West explores the idea of undoing the damage done by colonialism through reflecting on the impact of colonisation upon her sense of self as an Aboriginal woman. Her video Decolonist leads the viewer on a guided meditation, employing her own personal meditation strategies as a means to decolonise the self.

The PICA Salon 2016 Vernissage

Radical Ecologies launches as the PICA Salon Vernissage, the flagship event for PICA's award-winning donor program, on Saturday 30 July. Since its inception seven years ago, this exclusive celebration has developed a reputation for being one of the most sophisticated events on the Perth arts calendar, with highly sought after tickets only available to ART1000 (or above) donors.

A stunning evening of art, fashion, music and intimate experiences PICA Salon Vernissage is an art, design and planet lover's dream. A truly avant-garde line up of artistic, environmental, olfactory, sonic and culinary encounters places this event above all others on the "must do, see, feel" experience list. In addition, many of the art works on display are for sale, providing a platform for both seasoned and new art collectors to add to their collections, with all proceeds going directly to the artists.

A donation of $1,000 or more secures a place for the donor and their guest at this exclusive event. This can be paid via monthly installments of $100 and is tax deductible. All proceeds go towards PICA's ongoing learning and development programs for artists and audiences.

A major fundraiser for the Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts, PICA Salon Vernissage has grown to signify not only a unique celebration of contemporary art, but a major social event aligned with a curated exhibition that provides an all encompassing sensorial, artistic and intellectual experience for art lovers and enthusiasts that is second to none.

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