Research Themes

1. Precarity

In our era of increasing environmental and economic challenges, when the disparity between the rich and the poor has expanded, the lives of the most vulnerable have become ever more precarious. When these conditions become entrenched, this situation is referred to as precarity. Environmental disasters brought on by climate change, increasing job insecurity caused by the casualisation of the work force, global terrorism, nuclear disasters: the list of global challenges that induce precarity is long. The J.M. Coetzee Centre for Creative Practice is interested in artistic and critical projects or events that examine how art responds to conditions of precarity.

Past events:

  • Visions of Precarity: A seminar with A/Prof Kristina-Iwata Weickgenannt and Dr Luke Harrald
  • Ecopoetics with acclaimed poets Jill Jones and Peter Minter
  • Why Do Things Break, a day long creative symposium on the theme of "Why Do Things Break"
  • The Poetics of Place a seminar with Western Australian luminaries John Kinsella and Tracey Ryan
  • H2O: Life & Death, a two day international conference on the role of waters in shaping our identity in conditions of precarity.
  • Oratunga Winter School: Creating out of Place, four unforgettable days of collaboration, creative development and critical reflection on creating in response to Country. Set in the historic Oratunga sheep station on the traditional lands of the Adnyamathanha people.
  • Masterclass with Sisonke Msimang: Writing Lives. In this masterclass, activist and writer Sisonke Msimang will reflect on the writing of her memoir, Always Another Country: A Memoir of Exile and Home that examines her life growing up as the daughter of South African freedom fighters.

Upcoming events:

  • Oratunga Winter School #2, five full days of collaboration, creative development and critical reflection on the art of creative place-making in storied Country, set in the historic Oratunga sheep station on the traditional lands of the Adnyamathanha people.
  • The Anthropocene Salon, a new conversation on why and how we live in a changing climate.

     

For more information about this research theme or to discuss potential projects, please contact Jill Jones or Jennifer Rutherford.

2. Immersive curatorship

Curatorship has become a key concept in the humanities, allowing for modes of interpretation and engagement that depart from the material object as the focus of research, rather than historical narratives or social frameworks. How do we understand artworks and how do weave narratives about them? What are other ways in which we can communicate our understandings about art, using new interactive digital technologies?

Past events:

  • Traverses: J.M. Coetzee in the World mobile application. A project that curated an exhibition of rare archival material from the Harry Ransom Centre at the University of Texas Austin, held at the Kerry Packer Public Gallery at The University of South Australia. The mobile app also includes interviews with world-leading Coetzee scholars, giving users a new way into Coetzee's enigmatic and challenging oeuvre. Available now on the App store or Google Play.
  • Schubert on the Streets: Seraphim Trio take Schubert's beloved Trout Quintet out onto the streets Adelaide. View the video of the event, made by acclaimed street artist Peter Drew, on our Facebook page.
  • Macau Days: an exhibition about the cultural melting pot of Macau, featuring the dazzling poetry and prose of Brian Castro, the enigmatic images of renowned Adelaide artist John Young and the evocative sound art of Luke Harrald.
  • Tjungu Pakani - Together We Rise, a mini-festival celebrating Titjikala (NT) culture through art and music, featuring public art and music workshops, an exhibition and a concert at Ayers House. Workshops were held at Lot Fourteen. See our Facebook page for photos and more.
  • Raining Poetry in Adelaide - an event that brings poetry to the streets of Adelaide, but only when it rains. Keep your eyes peeled on the streets of Adelaide during spring showers!
  • J.M. Coetzee: Photographs from Boyhood - An exhibition that showcases Nobel Laureate J.M. Coetzee’s youthful foray into photography, when he attempted to capture ‘the moment when truth revealed itself’.9 November - 9 December 2018, Ira Raymond Exhibition Room, University of Adelaide.

Upcoming events: 

  • Seraphim Plus: A Weekend Mini-Fest - A weekend of classical music performed by Australian most enduring and acclaimed piano trio, Seraphim Trio, with a panel discussion exploring the intersections between music and the visual arts with Art Gallery of South Australia's Assistant Director, Lisa Slade.
  • Raining Poetry in Adelaide, for the third year in a row, curated poems will be painted on the streets of Adelaide with invisible paint that will only be revealed when it rains.

For more information on this research theme or to discuss potential projects relating to this theme, please contact Catherine Speck or Anna Goldsworthy.

3. Transnationalism

As cultures mix and merge in our increasingly globalised world, new transnational cultural formations emerge. The J.M. Coetzee Centre is particularly interested in artistic or critical works examining transnationalism in the creative arts.

Past events:

Macau Days: an exhibition about the cultural melting pot of Macau, featuring the eaturing the dazzling poetry and prose of Brian Castro, the enigmatic images of renowned Adelaide artist John Young and the evocative sound art of Luke Harrald.

Against World Literature: Photography and History in Life & Times of Michael K: This seminar with A/Prof Hermann Wittenberg (University of the Western Cape) will argue against a transnational reading of J.M. Coetzee's novel, placing it within its local context through an examination of its links to photography and the story of a Northern Cape farmer Jan Pieriga.

Upcoming events:

TBA

For more information on this research theme or to discuss possible projects, please contact Meg Samuelson.