Oceanic Thinking @ UQ Art Museum, Australia


19 July-17 December

Works that are a part of Ensayos ongoing inquiry into peatland protection can currently be experienced at University of Queensland Art Museum (Brisbane, Australia) as a part of a group exhibition Oceanic Thinking. Ensayos works, including posters, scents and audio are exhibited alongside artworks by Amrita Hepi, Madison Bycroft and Angela Tiatia. The exhibition and associated programming challenges visitors to think together with the liquid, vast, biodiverse and non-binary spaces of the ocean to explore the legacies of the past while speculating together on our collective future.

“Oceanic Thinking” is the inaugural exhibition of the multi-year project “Blue Assembly”. In collaboration with campus partners including UQ’s Centre for Marine Science, the project coincides with the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030). A companion to Blue Assembly, The Clam’s Kiss | Sogi a le faisua is an online journal by UQ Curatorial Researcher-in-Residence Dr Léuli Eshrāghi with Senior Curator of UQ Art Museum Peta Rake. The Clam’s Kiss includes contributions of essays, reflections, interviews and poems in the spirit of ceremonial and political practices of reciprocity and affirmation that are evidenced in the sogi practice (shared breath of life or ritualised kiss) common across many Great Ocean cultures and restricted in a time of planetary health crisis. 

Ensayos member Freja Carmichael has contributed a reflection on the language of weaving present in ‘River Dreaming’, an early fibre work by Ngarrindjeri weaver, Yvonne Koolmatrie (b.1944).

To close the Oceanic Thinking exhibition, Ensayos members from Norway and Chile will join the Australian research pod on Minjerribah (Moreton Bay, Australia) for a collective residency and to co-facilitate a field work masterclass with UQ’s post graduate students and local artists.

Ensayos participation in this exhibition has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body.

Image credits.

1. “jalo gaba ” 2022: gulayi (Quandamooka woman’s bag) by Sonja Carmichael and glass vessel hand blown by Jarred Wright. The vessel holds incense co-created through conversations, shared research and the many hands of Sonja Carmichael, Freja Carmichael, Leecee Carmichael, Renee Rossini, Caitlin Franzmann, Glynn Carmichael, Jasper Coleman and Ira.

2. “Damp” and “Rich” 2022: scents by Christy Gast and agustine zegers in glass vessels by Jarred Wright and “A Gift of Scent [Bog Hollow, Amenia, New York]” 2022: sound work created by Karolin Tampere.

3. “Wolves in the Mire” 2022: scent by Randi Nygård and Simon Daniel Tegnander Wenzel in glass vessel by Jarred Wright. 

4. Digital renderings of posters designed by Christy Gast, Camila Marambio, Rosario Ureta with collaboration from WCS-Chile.

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