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Janet Laurence

Requiem

When

Every day, 11am to 7pm Saturday 16 January to Sunday 24 January

Curated by acclaimed Australian artist Janet Laurence, ‘Requiem’ brings together art, performances and talks to lament the massive loss of ecologies on the anniversary of the 2020 bushfire crisis. 

Within the Paddington Reservoir Gardens, the artwork installations and program of events create a space of healing such that we might cultivate a renewed encounter with and commitment to our shared nature.

‘Requiem’ enlists artists, musicians, poets, scientists, environmental advocates and Indigenous leaders to share stories of resilience and knowledge for the future. Highlights include:

  • Musicians William Barton and Véronique Serret performing a new composition commissioned by Artology, combining the unique storytelling power of didgeridoo and violin.

  • Muruwari and Budjiti activist Bruce Shillingsworth speaking about bushfire-affected rivers alongside Janet Laurence’s glistening Water Bar installation.

  • A screening of the documentary ‘Wild Australia: After the Fires’, which is narrated by Hugo Weaving and charts stories about the recovery and resilience of our wildlife.

  • Multi-instrumentalist Charlie Chan and Sydney Art Quartet’s James Beck presenting a moving string performance within the ethereal inner chamber.

  • Caring for Country storytelling for kids with Lille Madden inspired by artist Tony Albert’s ‘Regeneration’ and facilitated by Groundswell.

  • Poetry readings presented by the Sydney Environment Institute and Red Room Poetry, chaired by poet Luke Fischer and accompanied by cellist Christina Christensen.

  • Panel discussions facilitated by the Sydney Environment Institute and Groundswell, which open up opportunities to listen and learn about pathways towards regeneration.

The full program can be found here on the Sydney Festival website.

Laurence says, “how do we mourn and remember the inestimable loss – of animals, of flora, of ecological worlds – wrought by the black summer fires of 2019-2020? I believe we need to make our landscape sacred again; we need to re-enchant it through knowledge sharing between scientists, artists and Indigenous peoples.”

‘Requiem’ was made possible by the City of Sydney Artform festival and events sponsorship.

Contact event organiser

Janet Laurence

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