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Shelley Lasica

Shelley Lasica: WHEN I AM NOT THERE

Dates:
15–27 August 2022

The work of Shelley Lasica reveals a sustained exploration of dance, movement and the varying contexts in which they can occur. WHEN I AM NOT THERE provides an important occasion to reflect on forty years of Lasica’s choreographic practice and will be the first survey of its kind in Australia. Curated by Hannah Mathews (Senior Curator, MUMA), the performance exhibition WHEN I AM NOT THERE features a mise-en-scène comprising new and existing elements, including contributions from the artist’s long-term collaborators and a new ensemble work commissioned for the occasion and performed live for the duration of the gallery’s opening hours. The 2021 recipient of an Australia Council Dance Fellowship, Melbourne-based Lasica is developing this new work with a team of ten other artists, including Lydia Connolly-Hiatt, Luke Fryer, Timothy Harvey, Rebecca Jensen, Megan Payne, Lisa Radford, Lana Šprajcer, Oliver Savariego, François Tétaz and Colby Vexler.

The exhibition will also present components from Lasica’s archive of earlier works, including costuming, objects, soundscapes and text. Consolidating ideas and experiments that Lasica has been developing throughout her career, WHEN I AM NOT THERE will contribute to discussions around choreography in the gallery space and activate the tension between what it means ‘to perform’ and ‘to exhibit’.

This new commission and survey exhibition is realised as part of Precarious Movements: Choreography and the Museum, an ARC research project that involves the following partners: the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; MUMA, Melbourne; the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne; Tate, UK; and UNSW Sydney. The exhibition provides this overarching project with critical and situated research focused on the curation and practice of choreography in the museum environment.

Shelley Lasica: WHEN I AM NOT THERE is accompanied by a substantial monograph featuring new writing from Erin Brannigan, Justin Clemens, Claudia La Rocco, Robyn McKenzie and Zoe Theodore. Positioning Lasica’s oeuvre within Australian contemporary practice as well as international contexts, it will be the first monograph published on an Australian choreographer. A comprehensive account of Lasica’s performance and exhibition history and extensive documentation drawn from her archive will be presented alongside the commissioned texts.

Image: Shelley Lasica. Photo: Jacqui Shelton

Acknowledgements:

This new commission and survey exhibition is realised as part of Precarious Movements: Choreography and the Museum, an ARC research project that involves the following partners: the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; MUMA, Melbourne; the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne; Tate, UK; and UNSW Sydney. The exhibition provides this overarching project with critical and situated research focused on the curation and practice of choreography in the museum environment.

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