Messy never-endings: Curating inConversation as interdisciplinary collaborative dialogue

Lyndall Adams, Renée Newman-Storen, Neil Ferguson and Christopher Kueh
2014 Conference

This paper will explore the curation of a collaborative exhibition amongst creative higher degree by research candidates (from the School of Communications and Arts and the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts), arts practitioners and researchers from different art forms and discipline backgrounds. It will look at the conversations between artists and researcher collaborators working together to produce a broad range of creative works, culminating in an exhibition titled In Conversation, to be staged at Edith Cowan University’s Spectrum Project Space in October 2014.

The context of the inConversation exhibition aims to inform and expand on current debates about the challenges and benefits of inter- and cross-disciplinary collaboration in the arts. While collaboration within discrete artistic disciplines has been quite common, it is now becoming increasingly important for artists to look beyond their silos and invite interactions with researchers in other disciplines and art forms. The curation of this exhibition proposes to explore what complexity may mean in terms of the processes of practice-led research in probing how the push and pull of the collaborative process, by which the outcomes become more than the sum of the parts, plays out in a cross-disciplinary, creative context.

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About the author

Lyndall Adams is a Perth based contemporary artist currently working as a research supervision leader and HDR student research consultant and in the Faculty of Education and Arts at Edith Cowan University. Lyndall is an arts practice-led researcher interested in complex narrative structures role in positioning visual images of the body. Lyndall draws influence from the interface between post-structuralist and new materialist feminist thinking. Her arts-practice articulates the female body; the lived body that is determined and specific though paradoxically in a state of flux, defined and redefined by changing practices and discourses. Lyndall has participated in solo, collaborative and group exhibitions within Australia and internationally.

Renée Newman-Storen has been a performer, writer, and director for over fifteen years. In 2011 she completed a PhD that was a theoretical and creative analysis of media-induced moral panics considered as forms of social performance. She has worked in theatre and film locally, nationally and internationally as a performer, writer and director. She is currently a research supervisor for WAAPA at ECU in Western Australia and her research interests include where the arts meets social enquiry, arts interventions in the built environment and performance praxis/research nexus.

Neil Ferguson is a HDR research consultant at Edith Cowan University where he is also a research assistant working on practice-led research related projects. Neil has also lectured and tutored in theology at the University of Notre Dame Australia (Fremantle). His current research interests relate to practice-led research: its nature and rigour as a methodology as well as its theoretical foundations. Neil is also a committee member with the Mandorla Art Award.

Dr Christopher Kueh is Senior Lecturer in School of Communication and Arts, of Edith Cowan University. Coming from graphic design background, Christopher is committed to apply design thinking approaches to innovate educational, organisational and social situations. Christopher’s research and consultancy works have earned him positions of academic consultant and Visiting Professor to University Tunku Abdul Rahman (Malaysia in 2009), and STIKOM Surabaya University (Surabaya, Indonesia in 2011). Christopher’s roles were to expand the boundaries of design education in these universities and promote trans-disciplinary design research and practice-led research.