Hopes, vision and fears - NAVA COMMISSION
‘This election year and forever more, we want politicians and their constituents – you, us, economists, farmers, kids, scientists, teachers, workers – to understand that art is not something to be contained within a spreadsheet, a set of KPIs, or a ‘creative industries’ portfolio. As we face the possibility of mass extinction, the rise of populism, toxic masculinity, continued displacement due to climate change, war and racism, it is a vital yet indefinable part of making us humans, whole – not because it has any answers, but rather because it helps us articulate our questions. We want those in power to make real space for the voices and perspectives of artists in culture. A space that honours and respects people who identify as women, queer, First Nations, non-binary, people of colour. To pay attention to kids and elders as the past and future leaders of our society…
At its most basic, working together is a reaction against a singular vision: we refuse to be auteurs, we disperse knowledge, and we rebel against any hierarchy. We will endeavour, in difference and complexity, in conversation and argument, to take this organisation into its third iteration. Our stubborn rejection of conventional frameworks will be our gesture towards world-saving, We hope that this rejection becomes an embodied practice and reaches far beyond this company’s governance.’
In February 2019 the National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA) invited Mish, Lara and Eugenia to respond to their hopes, visions and fears; and their intent on working together at APHIDS as a reaction against a singular vision.
Aphids New World Order Party
APHIDS invites you to celebrate the announcement of new Co-Directors of the organisation Eugenia Lim, Mish Grigor and Lara Thoms, and raise a glass to outgoing Artistic Director Willoh S. Weiland and Artistic Associate Lz Dunn. Starting in 2019 these artists will be taking the company in an new collaborative and deeply feminist direction.
Come party with us at MPavilion on Friday 2 November; hear more about our plans for 2019, drink some bubbles and shed some tears – with cameos from some special guests and sets by JR Brennan and Sullivan.
Lara Thoms, Eugenia Lim & Mish Grigor
2019 Co-Directorship announcement
Aphids is thrilled to announce a new direction for the company, with the appointment of three leading Melbourne-based artists – Eugenia Lim, Mish Grigor and Lara Thoms – who will form a new co-directorship for Aphids. Driven by a feminist methodology in which collaboration, deep listening and radical leadership is key, the trio of artists will lead the company into its third iteration from 2019.
This announcement sees the artists’ individual practices evolve with the support, history and vision of a 25-year-old company. As a co-directorship, Aphids will privilege diversity as a guiding principle of its remit, bringing over 10 years of collective experience across experimental theatre, live art, performance and visual art. In 2019 and beyond, Aphids will make and present art that is provocative, loud, ambitious, urgent and formally promiscuous.
“We want to be active in shaping an artistic and cultural landscape that gives space to multiple voices – a sense of welcome, dialogue, criticality, experimentation and support for diverse artists and audiences,” said Lim, Grigor and Thoms.
Artistic director Willoh S. Weiland has stepped down after seven significant years at Aphids. Weiland is moving on to a creative associate position at Mona Foma in Hobart, Tasmania and will continue her work as an honorary fellow at the Microsoft Research Centre for Social User Interface at the University of Melbourne. She and Artistic Associate Lz Dunn, who is currently touring her incredible work Flyway to Toulouse after presentations in Melbourne, Lithuania, Bulgaria, The Netherlands and Germany, will remain on the Aphids committee.
Aphids is an artist-led organisation formed in 1994 by artistic director and composer David Young, writer and musician Cynthia Troup, visual artist Sarah Pirrie and fashion designer Kath Banger. In 2010, Weiland joined the company as artistic director, putting her own unique mark on the company ethos with an experimental and innovative program fusing music, performance and new technologies.
Stay tuned for an Aphids celebration in November 2018, to welcome our new directors and raise a toast to the significant contributions of Lz Dunn and Willoh S.Weiland.