Out, in, out, in, out, in, out, in, out, in, Out, in, out, in, out, in, out, Out, out, out, out

Gerturde Glasshouse

January 2022, Contact High, Gertrude Glasshouse, Melbourne.

Excerpts from exhibition catalogue by curator Anador Walsh:

About the Exhibition:

“In line with Gertrude’s commitment to supporting curatorial practice and the presentation of ambitious projects and public outcomes, the month of January will be dedicated to Contact High, a Performance Review takeover of Gertrude Glasshouse.

Coming out of a two year period where performance was primarily engaged with through the intermediaries of phone and laptop screens, Contact High seeks to emphasise that which is lost through digital dissemination: action and dialogue, movement and sweat, laboured breath and foot falls, audiences and performers, dancers and spectators, dramaturgy and scores.

Over the course of three weeks, six Naarm based artists will be in residence at Gertrude Glasshouse; rehearsing, workshopping and developing new or existing performance works. This residency will culminate in the public presentation of these works across two performance nights on Thursday 20 January and Thursday 27 January.

Contact High is interested in the transference that occurs between performers and audiences in the gallery and is a celebration of our newly regained ability to be together, performing and spectating”
Artist Statement:

“Sean Miles’ Out, in, out, in, out, in, out, in, out, in, Out, in, out, in, out, in, out, Out, out, out, out, 2021, responds to the experienceof oscillating between being in and out of lockdown. This work is composed of three key components: Miles’ 2021 video work Killing Time for Runway Journal, a costume of the Kahu made by Miles during the 2019 bushfires that ravaged so-called Australia and a new performance developed for Contact High. Killing Time articulates a frustration with standardised, colonial time, fucking with its measurements in various ways, using visual, sonic and written forms. Inspired by Miles’ dreams during the lockdowns of the last two years, this performance-for-video sees Miles liberate themself from the construct of time, to instead follow the rhythms of their own body, spirit and mind. Continuing Miles’ interest in trickster folklore, the costume of the Kahu installed in Gertrude Glasshouse references the story of Māui, in which he transforms into a Kahu (red tailed hawk) in order to fly out of a burning forest, singeing his wings in the process. Set to a soundtrack comprised of sound recordings of Miles sleeping and an augmented version of Kate Bush’s Breathing, the performance component of Out, in, out, in, out, in, out, in, out, in, Out, in, out, in, out, in, out, Out, out, out, out, engages with dreaming and the breath as means of traversing space and time during periods of lockdown and isolation. In this performance, Miles wraps themself in a bedsheet, as they have frequently over the last two years, to cocoon and regenerate themself. When viewed collectively, this work touches on the respiratory effects of COVID-19 and the air toxicity caused by climate catastrophes, to explore the necessity and transformative potential of dreaming and breathing.”

Full exhibition catalogue can be found here

Photos: Keelan O’Heir. Courtesy of Gertrude and Performance Review.