BrisAsia Festival 2016 | Weaving our Heritage
Engage Arts was selected by the Brisbane City Council to deliver a temporary site specific art installation as part of the BrisAsia Festival 2016. The aim of the annual BrisAsia Festival is to celebrate, develop and foster connections and collaborations between Brisbane and Asia.
Engage Arts presented a temporary site-specific in Brisbane City’s Eagle Lane, which created an opportunity for visitors to experience diverse Asian cultures in Brisbane through a visual street art installation and a smartphone app art tour.
Engage Arts developed the curatorial theme of ‘Weaving Our Heritage’ and contracted Brisbane-based artists, Vanghoua Anthony Vue and Elysha Rei (Gould), both of whom explore their Asian heritage through their art practice, to produce new works especially for the installation. Vue is a multidisciplinary artist who draws on popular culture, street art, language systems and Hmong textile traditions, weaving aspects of his Hmong heritage into a contemporary art context. Rei explores her Japanese lineage, using concepts of community transition and migration by referencing symbolic Japanese animals, plants and patterns and placing them within new environments.
During the development process Engage Arts worked with the artists to design and deliver temporary works that met the complexities of Eagle Lane. Vue’s large scale tape works were prepared in the studio and applied as panels to walls and windows. Additionally, Vue worked directly with tape onto street furniture and paving. Rei expanded on her regular art practice of paper-cutting to incorporate new mediums of vinyl and Mylar for large scale lightboxes and window works. Street art style paste-ups were also adapted to decorate the drain covers of the laneways road surface.
Install video of Vue’s window panels
Install video of Rei’s road paste-down
In addition to the physical art on display Engage Arts worked with Emily Craven of Story City App to provide an augmented visitor experience with digital content accessed via smartphones. The Story City App provided a platform to share a new story, whereby users could walk through the installation watching and listening to detailed information about each of the works.
Audio files of artists talks in the Story City App
Additional digital content on artists and the works
We also ran a successful multi-platform marketing campaign that using online event listings, Avant Card print collateral and engagement across social media. The event attracted media coverage including 612ABC review by Jess Hinchliffe and Akira Le of Creative Drinks.
The visual display of Asian cultural heritages generated an inter-cultural dialogue with elements of Hmong, Japanese and Australian cultures presented side-by-side with the installation experienced by approximately 10,000 visitors over the BrisAisa Festival 2016 installation period.
Engage Arts would like to thank Brisbane City Council for the opportunity to be part of the BrisAsia Festival. Plus a big thank you to the artists, contractors and volunteers who dedicated their time and creative energy to bringing this project to life.
Featured image: Anthony Vue, Au Hmoob Zi, 2016. Photo: Charlotte Tegan.