AAJ Press
Art & Public Space, Art Projects, Commissions, Environment, Exhibitions & Events

Dirt Blood and Water – International Art Lab. Sydney Festival 2014

meet the makers sydneyCan one genuinely site specific work be made to work in three locations, in three different countries? A cross-disciplinary creative incubator titled Dirt Blood and Water, brings together local and international collaborators to develop a major public artwork with resonance across three countries. The result will be one of the world’s first singular large-scale, water-based, public artworks designed to feature and have relevance to three international waterways of significant industrial heritage – Sydney Harbour, the River Clyde in Glasgow and the Rhine-Herne Canal in North West Germany. The Foreshore Authority will host the Dirt Blood and Water Lab at the artists’ retreat, Bundanon, in Shoalhaven, southern NSW Australia, with artists Robyn Backen, Andre Dekker, Graham Eatough, Nigel Helyer and Jennifer Turpin. The joint creation is expected to be completed by 2014/15 and will be developed as an in-situ artwork with the capacity to be a touring installation.

Dirt Blood and Water – The artists will explore these three themes in the context of human connections to waterways, life at the edge of land, and the military echoes of The Great War in these urban habitats. They will be joined in their exploration by experts across a range of disciplines including urban planning, social geography, maritime archaeology and engineering.

As place maker for The Rocks, Darling Harbour and other foreshore lands, Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority’s creative model aims to give historic and contemporary resonance to some of the city’s most visited public spaces, “Places are primarily about people. Places are founded upon memories and associations. Our challenge is to create work that draws on the history, social memory and contemporary use of a place to engage visitors in a resonant manner,” Catherine Gallagher, Chief Executive Officer, Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority.

sydneyMeet the Makers: Can Site Specific Work Tour? – Artists and curators of The Dirt Blood and Water Lab present their ideas at a public forum to brainstorm their approach to creating public art for urban spaces. Sydney Festival, Spiegeltent, Festival Village, Hyde Park, Sydney. 12pm, 25 January 2014.

This project is a co-production between Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority, Urbane Künste Ruhr, and Glasgow Life / Merchant City Festival. The Ministry for Families, Children, Youth, Culture, and Sports of the State of North Rhine- Westphalia


About jeh

Jeremy Hunt is Director of the AAJ Press (Art & Architecture Journal / Press) – a writer and consultant on art and public space


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