Wednesday, August 30, 2006

BFAA International Video, Installation and Performance exhibition

This was the 3rd time I had participated in Busan Fine Arts Association's annual international exhibition.
This year it was held in the Gallery space of Busan Citizen's Hall in Beomildong.

There were works by artists from Korea, Japan, Australia, and France, including installation, video and performance.

I showed my "Book of Bright Ideas" installation before it went off to Australia for another exhibition at the Noosa Regional Gallery.

It was made from a hard cover book, with a string of pulsating electric lights inserted between the hollowed out pages.

You can see a video of my "Book of Bright Ideas" in July's blog entry and a full description.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Goryeong International Performance Art Festival

Goryeong International Performance Art Festival was held on August 12 & 13, 2006 at a disused elementary school in the small town of Goryeong, west of Daegu. In Korea many small country schools have closed due to the shrinking population and the trend towards urban living. The Korean government has allocated funds for the schools to be turned into community art centres or villages.

The festival included invited artists from four contries - Korea, Japan, Spain and Australia.The styles of performance were diverse. Some of the other artists are shown below:
Yasuo Fukurozaka, Japan
Shim, Hongjae, Korea
Yun, Myeong guk, Korea
Valentin Torrens, Spain

My performance was called "The Elements",
referring to fire, water, earth and air.

I commenced by laying out sheets of calligraphy paper
on the grass beneath an old pine tree.
I then performed actions to connect with the elements -
filling a bowl with water and aerated it with my breath,
digging the earth, and lighting a candle.

I painted designs on the paper with the water

relating to the 4 elements.

I set fire to the paper which burned away ,

leaving only the wet elemental designs on the grass.

Finally, I blew out the candle

and poured the water over my body.

Below is a video of my performance "The Elements":

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Jejudo Installation Art Festival (JIAF) 2006

I was invited to take part in the annual Jeju Island
International Installation Art Festival which opened on August 5, 2006. The site for the festival was a public park located in the sports stadium complex in Jeju City.

I made 2 installations for the festival, both using trees in the park as support.

The first installation
is called"Raintrees",

and the second is "Dreamweaver".

The materials used for "Dreamweaver" were sticky tape and plastic foodwrap, plus a few fallen leaves and a birdsnest I found on the grass beneath the trees. I wanted to make a really ephemeral looking piece to express the idea of images in the mind's eye.

In effect I was drawing or weaving with the plastic wrap on a background of sticky tape, and the shadows made by the afternoon sun added a third dimension to the work.

"Images constantly flow and change - a bird, a cloud, the wind, a fish are all connected. Dreams and reality are all the same in the mind's eye."

In "Raintrees" -

I wanted to express the feeling

of the heavy, cool raindrops

of the summer monsoon season.

Materials: Plastic, air and water

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Illusions -performance by Penelope Thompson at Madangkuk Festival, Mokpo, Korea

I was invited to Mokpo City, Jeolla province Korea, to take part in the Madangkuk Top Festival 2006, which is an annual festival of traditional Korean outdoor performance and music.

I was asked to do 2 performances - firstly, The Great Australian Tea Ceremony (see my earlier blogs for more photos and videos of previous performance) as part of the opening ceremony for the festival.

On the second night I performed a new piece called 'Illusions', which developed out of my earlier performance called "In & Out" at the JIPAF Festival in April 2006.

In this performance I wanted to express ideas about the modern industrialised way of life, which is based on the illusory concepts of separateness - from each other, and from nature.

The performance space was outdoors under the trees and I was again dressed in business-like attire with briefcase.
I used a roll of plastic cling wrap to create a separate, sterile space for myself between two trees.

Then, after a while,

like a spider caught in it's own web,

I struggled to be free of the restrictions of my own making, throwing away the contents of my briefcase and casting off my shoes so I could touch the earth.

Interestingly, the Korean children were only too happy to acquire the very things I was casting off, or even try to return them to me!

You can watch a short video of the performance here: