ART / HOPE / CULTURE
The project aimed to investigate, document and promote the art and the art-making processes of ten women artists from migrant and refugee backgrounds. The women involved in the Art/Hope/Culture project are: Merlinda Bobis (writing and performance), Jigzie Campbell (performance), Lella Carridi (visual arts and writing), Ok-Hean Chang (visual art), Sivan Gabrielovitch (theatre), Mehwish Iqbal (visual art), Helen Kassa (film, poetry and spoken word), Hiromi Tango (visual art), My Le Thi (visual art), and Yumi Umiumare (dance).
Some of the artists have come to Australia as migrants, others as refugees (from Philippines, Jamaica, Italy, Korea, Israel, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Japan and Vietnam). Some have lived in Australia for many years and others have arrived more recently. They share identities as artists and migrants, culture-crossers whose mobilities have impacted not only their lives but their artworks and art-making as well.
The exhibition Transience at Footscray Community Arts Centre in March 2014 included these short films of the artists discussing their work, as well as samples of their artworks, displaying both the great diversity and similarities of these artists. Through these ethnographic films we invite you to experience some of the ways in which the artists themselves understand and articulate the role of art in their lives, and the shared migrant experience of the researchers, filmmakers and co-participants.