Next Wave announces full program for All School Lab in celebration of 40 years

by | May 3, 2024

Next Wave will mark its 40th anniversary with the All School Lab, a program of artist-led talks, performances and activities running over 24 – 25 May encompassing the theme of Past, Present and Future, culminating with a party curated by the Young Artistic Directorate.

The full program for the All School Lab has now been announced, and will include an artist-talk with Nat Randall, an artist working at the intersection of performance, video and film. Randall is also a founding member of art collective Hissy Fit and performance collective Team MESS and was previously nominated for a Helpmann Award for ‘Best Production of a Play’ for their critically acclaimed The Second Woman.

Visual artist Luke King will also present an artist-talk. Luke participated in the Next Wave Kickstart program in 2017 and held an exhibition at Bus Projects as part of the Next Wave festival in 2018. Luke is a co-founder with Geoff Riding of Magic Hands, which teaches Deaf-led classes in beginner and intermediate Auslan. The Performance Lectures take place at narrm ngarrgu Library, City of Melbourne’s new library in the Queen Victoria Market precinct.

Dance artists Sarah Aiken and Rebecca Jensen of Deep Soulful Sweats will present Past Life Regression at MPavilion Parkville, which originally emerged from OVERWORLD, presented at Next Wave in 2014. Deep Soulful Sweats is participatory contemporary art – ecstatic and inclusive, it’s a joyful, surprising and exhilarating experience for anyone and everyone.

Interdisciplinary artist Bethany Fallows will end the first day with Taking Stock, a transcendental tiny restaurant experience, in collaboration with James Paul. This experimental broth sauna will guide participants through a meditation as they sip umami broth and contemplate the intersection of care, labour and collective action. Constructed out of conventional cooking equipment including induction stove tops, this custom-built installation will be heated by large pots of steamy, simmering broth. Designed for only eight people at a time, this is a sonic, visual and visceral experience like no other. Bethany is an Arizona born, Naarm-based artist and set and costume designer for theatre who’s work often engages with public space utilising food and humour.

Day two continues with the Seeking to Care event. Come on a journey under the care-filled guidance of Next Wave’s Artistic Directorate, to consider how motivations like time, Country and experimentation influence our approach to curatorial practice and intergenerational knowledge. In small groups, you will explore narrm ngarrgu Library and surrounding areas to re-imagine Next Wave’s Curation as Care model together. Through conversation and playful prompts, participants are invited to uncover new ways to connect and relate with others.

Multi-disciplinary Western Sydney-based artist and  Next Wave’s Artistic Director (NSW) Marian Abboud and Kickstart artists, An.Other Collective. will present Preserving Practice, a hands-on workshop teaching the art of preserving using salt brine and vinegar and a selection of colourful, seasonal vegetables, spices and herbs. Marian works across various technologies to create projected images that feed into performance, installation, and site-specific works. She creates complex narratives by engaging with the community to build multi-layered socially responsive projects using curiosity as the springboard for cultural exchange and developing collective learning opportunities through creative expression.

The two-day All School Lab culminates with a 40th anniversary party during:next, at Brunswick Mechanics Institute which will transform Brunswick Mechanics into a futuristic performance space, emphasising the idea of evolution that builds on the past.  There will be vinyl and digital DJs, live performance artists, quiet moments for reflection and a series of speeches that span the history of Next Wave artists. A delight for all the senses, expect a space for everyone with snacks included.

The party will be curated by the Young Artistic Directorate: Young Artistic Directorate Banda, Matisse Laida, MaggZ, and Lydia Tesema, in collaboration with Next Wave Creative Producer, Nickila De Silva.

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