Common Ground was developed in consultation with Victoria’s regional festival sector in response to an expressed need for professional development in the area of community engagement.
During the project well-known Indonesian installation artist and architect Eko Prawoto worked with four regionally-based Victorian festivals to create a unique piece of outdoor sculpture. The residency was be supported by a series of workshops and forums with the participating festivals’ programming and organising committees and the broader regional event sector. The workshops were co-ordinated by the project’s Artistic Director Ian Pidd.
The participating festivals were:
Water Water Festival (Sale) November 2006
Located on the arts lawn beside the entertainment centre in the port precinct, the installation Ruang-A-Bang-Bang was a focal point with a visible impact on the town. Eko worked with instrument maker Steve Langton and technician Robert Dorber to create a space that was also an instrument. Musician/community facilitator Jenny Candy ran workshops with local community groups to develop a performance for the opening and closing events.
Common Ground (Lakes Entrance) Australia Day, 26 February 2007
A fire/water installation was staged on Australia Day at the Lakes Entrance foreshore near the footbridge. The Koorie community worked with local artist Catherine Larkins to create designs embedded with a rich layer of Gunnai/Kurnai culture. Eko worked in collaboration with Catherine, composer Vincent Lamberti, theatrical designer Annie Marshall, the fishing community and emerging artists from the Koorie community, to explore the sculptural potential of the land, existing icons and adjacent fishing boats and to develop a spectacular bridge installation.
SheppARTon Festival (Shepparton) 8-18 March 2007
In 2007, the Shepparton Festival took significant steps to engage the local multi-cultural community to celebrate the diversity of the region and the contribution of migrants. This project provided the opportunity to create a stunning work that attracted a diverse audience and attracted people to the region. Local artist Angie Russi worked with Eko to develop ideas around the themes of migration and settlement, drawing on building forms from a diversity of cultures. The culmination of a series of community workshops and activities, the central 'Common Ground' installation was launched at a major community gathering on 9 March at Princes Park. This exciting and inspirational night began a celebration of the region and provided people with the opportunity to come together to share, reflect and enjoy the works, and the music.
For more information, please download the Groundwork Issue # 5 Article on Common Ground (PDF 353k).
Regional Arts Victoria Common Ground Supporters