Liveworks 2019: Feminist Sound

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Lauren Brincat, 'Other Tempo'. Image: Romello Pereira.

This year, our annual celebration of experimental art converges around two central themes, Feminist Sound and Culture Disruptors. Our program of Feminist Sound features visionary women and non-binary artists who champion the intersection of sound art, experimental music and contemporary performance.

Performance Space has a strong history of championing feminist practices, and Liveworks has continued that commitment each year. Each festival feeds the next, and previous Liveworks projects such as Hissy Fit’s explosive and memorable I Might Blow Up Someday and Hannah Bronte’s incredible performance party Fempre$$: Wishwitch have planted the seeds for this large-scale platform for Feminist Sound practice. 

We’ve noticed a growing interest in sound art amongst our audiences: there are so many pioneering women artists in this field so we have created a large-scale platform for these artists to embark on a more ambitious series of commissions, presentations, experiments and sets. We’re interested to explore what kind of Feminist Sounds are reverberating across the Asia Pacific, and what kind of individual and collective futures they point to.

The artists in this program come from diverse art forms and backgrounds, and they deploy sound in multiple ways in their works. For example, Lauren Brincat works between sculpture, installation and performance. Her major commission Other Tempo takes her recurring interest in drums and drumming to new heights of scale and ambition, bringing together a collective or drummers to activate Brincat’s installation in the vast public spaces of Carriageworks.

Gail Priest has worked with Performance Space for decades: as an artist and curator, she makes beautiful sound installations and performances that expand the possibilities of the medium. Gail has also undertaken extensive research and has written widely on the subject of women in sound, championing their pivotal role in this exciting artistic field.

Elsewhere in the program, major new projects by Chicks on Speed, Betty Grumble and Liquid Architecture create new kinds of sonic experiences, inviting us to hear the world differently and imagine feminist futures. Sonic Nightcap (full artist lineup to be announced soon) will include an exclusive line-up of women and non-binary experimental musicians performing free sets each night of the festival. And a series of workshops, keynote lectures and public conversations will expand on the ideas behind these works, inviting you deeper into their process and concepts.

We are proud to present this platform as a major component of Liveworks, and invite you to join us for a glimpse of our collective feminist future.