Burrinja Climate Change Biennale presents
Throughout Feb. | Across the Yarra Ranges
Live Actions expands climate change-responsive art across the stunning sites of Yarra Ranges through February 2023 in lively embodied forms. Five exciting projects engage communities with opportunities to walk, listen, witness performance and care for Country.
Lung Trees - Sound Art by Peter Mcilwain
1st- 26th Feb • 10am-5pm daily
Alfred Nicholas Memorial Gardens, 1A Sherbrooke Rd, Sherbrooke.
Lung Trees is a sound installation of breathing trees that invites the audience to listen creatively, bringing our attention to the elemental nature of the breath and the carbon cycle and connecting the personal and global experience of life.
We know climate change is real but we can’t feel it. Has it been too front of mind for too long? Or maybe there’s too much noise? Is it too much electronic virtual dreaming and we’re disconnected from our bodies and each other and nature? Or maybe we’ve become the rabbit in the headlights? Lung Trees is a sound installation of breathing trees that bypasses the didactic and gives instead the experiential. Maybe it would be easier to connect if you could hear the trees breathe in the CO2 from our lungs and our machines and breathe out the air we need to live.
Sound installations are site specific works that reference the spatial and acoustic qualities of the space in which they are presented. In Lung Trees separate sounds are positioned in the space in order to create an immersive sound experience. Trees and vegetation in the site disperse the sound so that there is an interaction between the sound and the site. In much of Mcilwain’s work, a recognizable sound is presented in an unusual context inviting the audience to listen creatively, making connections to associations that the sound might have. In this case the elemental nature of breathing and the carbon cycle is connected to both the personal and global experience of life.
Hope - An outdoor concert by Nat Bartsch
4th Feb at 6pm
Serenity Point Shelter, Dandenong Ranges Botanic Gardens, enter via Camelia carpark, 147 Falls Rd, Olinda.
Image by Brett Scapin
Melbourne pianist/composer Nat Bartsch presents her ARIA-nominated album Hope in an unprecedented natural setting. Released in 2021, Hope is an abbreviation of hopefulness and hopelessness, with the music responding to events including the Black Summer bushfires and Covid-19 lockdowns. Hearing Hope live is a deeply cathartic musical experience, creating the space for us to acknowledge all we have been through. But it also intends for the listener to ultimately leave with a sense of optimism and hope.
For this special performance for the Burrinja Climate Change Biennale, Nat will perform the work under the canopy of the Dandenongs bushland, where she grew up, with a string quartet and keyboard/electronics.
Climate Distraction - Environmental Performance Authority (EPA)
18th Feb 12pm & 3pm
Osprey Track, Mount Dandenong
EPA, Tree Lean, image from site rehearsal
EPA invites you to participate in a sensory encounter with Mount Corhanwarrabul. During a walking performance, participants will engage with the atmospheres and climate of this place as experienced in the moment. EPA artists will guide participants in activities and tasks that sensitise and provoke responses that are embodied, cognitive and psychological.
We (westerners) need a catastrophic shift in our thinking, our way of being in the world. Not catastrophic in a negative sense – we need silence, we need stillness, we need to listen. It is our constant doing that drives the problems we face, so does doing more really help? EPA will slowly draw participants into an alternate reality of stillness, silence, stopping and listening. Before we can figure out what action needs to be taken, we need to stop.
These experiences of stillness will be punctuated by performances by the EPA which playfully point to aspects of place. Participants will engage with the environment where the effects of the current climate emergency may be sensed visually, auditorily, olfactorily, and tactilely.
This walking performance will start at the carpark on Osprey track and move along the Kyeema trail to Bourke’s Lookout. The whole experience will conclude in the parkland underneath the transmission towers for games, refreshments, and a final discussion.
Lend a Hand at Coranderrk | Uncle Dave Wandin & Darren Wandin
25th Feb 10am-2pm
Coranderrk Nature Reserve, Badger Creek
Image Coranderrk, Wandoon Estate Aboriginal Corporation
This is a wonderful participatory opportunity to learn about First Nations perspectives on caring for Country with Wurundjeri knowledge holders, Uncle Dave Wandin and Darren Wandin, who will share their observations of local ecologies. Indigenous knowledge of Country over millennia offers a poignant perspective on global heating and environmental change: Darren reflects that ‘adaptation and resilience are a Wurundjeri mainstay.’ Transform your overwhelm at the climate crisis by putting some energy back into Country, lending a hand at Coranderrk, a very important place in the history of the Yarra Ranges region.
Please bring water and lunch for a picnic to continue yarning.
Dress appropriately for gardening in the heat.
Biome | Niki Shi & collaborators (EPA)
26th Feb 4pm & 6pm
Forecourt, Inspiro Community Health Hub, Belgrave
IMAGE: Niki Shi & collaborators, BIOME, site-specific performance
BIOME is a neo-ritual performance centring the microbial ecosystem of soil. In this open-air experiment, vocalists interweave with dancers manipulating a biomorphic geometric sculpture. Together, they invite spectators into a collaborative unearthing of potentials for connectivity, patterning and influence. The work follows the connective tissues linking micro and macro biomes, interspecies action, and how these elements embed resilience, vulnerability and adaptive capacity in local systems. It explores the creation of material anchor points for these connections and activates participation in the continually unfolding processes of decomposition, cycling and balancing that support life on earth.
The Burrinja Climate Change Biennale is delivered in partnership with Yarra Ranges Council, Yarra Ranges Regional Museum, and Your Library.