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dc.contributor.authorChristopher, Jason James
dc.date.accessioned2019-05-06
dc.date.available2019-05-06
dc.date.issued2018-10-01
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/2123/20360
dc.description.abstractResearch into Beizam Triple Hammerhead Shark: Animatronic technology and cross-cultural collaboration in the Torres Strait, was to further establish and test institutional recognition of cross-collaborative inspired Indigenous/non-Indigenous art within the emergence of a multimillion-dollar Torres Strait Islander arts industry. The success of mainland Aboriginal artists paved the way for Torres Strait Islanders to develop their own contemporary art movement, largely responsible for the cultural revival in which Indigenous communities now participate. Amid this revival, there is limited information on non-Indigenous involvement among these artists and works. The research presented in this thesis expands this area of knowledge. The main premise of my argument questions institutional and Indigenous arts industry downplaying of cross-cultural collaborative engagement among the Torres Strait Islander contemporary art movement. This is supported by demonstrating a history of cross-cultural engagement within the constructs of contemporary art making and cultural practice predating Western influence. I demonstrate how my work with Dr Ken Thaiday Snr (Thaiday) serves to promote cross-cultural engagement and in line with Sasha Grishin’s article on the Defying Empire: 3rd National Indigenous Art Triennial[1], poses questions to curatorial and art market agendas that segregate Indigenous art from the broader context of contemporary Australian non-Indigenous art. One of the arguments I have had with the two earlier shows and continue to have with the present one is with the concept of race-based segregation as the underlying basis for an art exhibition. Is indigenous art in Australia still in need of affirmative action and a sheltered environment for it to grow and survive?[2] The thesis questions curatorial and art market agendas that have misinterpreted our cross-cultural collaborations, segregating them from the broader context of contemporary Australian art through the dismissal of my involvement in the works. An investigation of technology inspired artistic collaborations between Thaiday and myself over the research period of five years is used as a platform to raise questions on the peripheral complications of my non-Indigenous participation in the co-creation of works connected to Torres Strait Islander culture. Our artistic collaborations merge animatronic technologies and automated production systems that integrate with Thaiday’s material culture. Thaiday and I have developed an artistic engagement combining our art practices to produce hybrid, performative works of contemporary art. The aesthetic is a combination of both our styles of work. Thaiday provides the historical context, uniquely styled cultural content and the framework for the collaborative concept to build from based on his past dance machines and centuries of material culture. I provide a connection to a digital realm, introducing technology and the format of a new contemporary aesthetic borne from automated processes and references to my art practice. The newly formed work is digitised bringing the collaborations to life, the works are jointly enhanced by our shared knowledge of the marine environment. The research and collaborative works draw from long-lasting traditions, of collaborative engagement with outsiders including and incorporating new ideas and technologies into the fabric of their own traditional practice and cultural development. A brief historical account of this contemporary art movement and key artists creates the context for three major works undertaken by Thaiday and myself that were shown in prominent exhibitions locally and internationally. The final collaborative work, Beizam Triple Hammerhead Shark 2016 produced for the 20th Biennale of Sydney, forms the major work for the research. This research documents and discusses, the production and reaction, to publically displayed co-created works between Thaiday and me, focusing on perception and understanding of our Indigenous/non-Indigenous artistic collaborative engagement. The thesis advocates a platform that allows our collaborative works to continue contributing towards the promotion of Indigenous cultures, Australian contemporary arts and sharing of cultural ideas and knowledge between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. [1] Grishin, Sasha. (June 7, 2017). Defying Empire: 3rd National Indigenous Art Triennial. Retrieved from https://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/art-and-design/defying-empire-3rd-national-Indigenous-art-triennial-20170606-gwlkgb.html [2] Grishin, Sasha. (June 7, 2017). Defying Empire: 3rd National Indigenous Art Triennial. Retrieved from https://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/art-and-design/defying-empire-3rd-national-Indigenous-art-triennial-20170606-gwlkgb.htmlen_AU
dc.publisherUniversity of Sydneyen_AU
dc.publisherFaculty of Artsen_AU
dc.rightsThe author retains copyright of this thesis. It may only be used for the purposes of research and study. It must not be used for any other purposes and may not be transmitted or shared with others without prior permission.en_AU
dc.subjectCollaborationen_AU
dc.subjectIndigenous/non-Indigenousen_AU
dc.subjectCross-culturalen_AU
dc.subjectCo-creationen_AU
dc.subjectKinetic arten_AU
dc.subjectArten_AU
dc.titleBeizam Triple Hammerhead Shark: Animatronic technology and cross-cultural collaboration in the Torres Straiten_AU
dc.typePhD Doctorateen_AU
dc.type.pubtypeDoctor of Philosophy Ph.D.en_AU


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