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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

She Conjured the Clouds

You can touch — and even eat — the kaleidoscope world of this world-premiere work by artist Justene Williams.
By Joe Rivers and Emma Joyce
October 30, 2019
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She Conjured the Clouds

You can touch — and even eat — the kaleidoscope world of this world-premiere work by artist Justene Williams.
By Joe Rivers and Emma Joyce
October 30, 2019
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Contemporary artist Justene Williams is known for her ambitious pieces — her 2014 work, Santa Was a Psychopomp, involved constructing a giant snow dome from a range of materials — but the new work, She Conjured the Clouds, might be her most daring project yet.

The world premiere work, taking place at Campbelltown Art Centre, is part of Sydney Festival and each 40-minute session is part live-performance, part installation. As you watch, you'll follow two children on an adventure to meet swamp creatures and ghost bats in a tactile world where you can eat parts of the scenery.

Williams brings to life a series of characters that communicate through sonic costumes, from a gang of native motorbike frogs to a ball of fairy floss. She's not the only person to perform. Yellow Wiggle Emma Watkins, who has extraordinary skills in AUSLAN, is the work's choreographer and one of the team of performers, which includes Deaf dancer Elvin Lam.

She Conjured the Clouds has been designed for audiences of all ages and abilities, including those in the Deaf and hard of hearing communities. The work also features video animation, recorded and live music, costumes, dance, aerial performance, sculptural objects and the smell and taste of popcorn.

Plus, there will be an audio description performance, a tactile tour and a relaxed performance, all on Friday, January 17.

Images: Rafaela Pandolfini; Justene Williams, She Conjured the Clouds, 2020.

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