An immersive festival of ‘ecstatic’ music and performance is taking over Arts Centre Melbourne
Supersense, the festival of ‘ecstatic’ music and performance, returns to the Arts Centre in August to give the building a three-day pre-spring clean – or “turn the place on its head”, as curator, vocalist and performer Sophia Brous puts it. Forget formal seating and prosceniums – Supersense wants to take the audience into places within the Arts Centre that they’ve never been before; and places they have been in – but give them a totally different experience. The goal? An “ecstatic” state. Brous, who masterminded the inaugural event in 2015, describes the festival as a “confluence of ritual and communion” designed to take audiences to “spaces of heightened perspective.” “Where in the past people sought out spaces of revelation in the presence of divinity, increasingly we are seeking these things out in spaces of collective artistic expression. I wanted to create a festival that explores these interrelated states of ecstatic perspective – within a contained environment.” Anyone who missed the first festival is likely to be enticed by this year’s big names – Russian revolutionaries Pussy Riot; UK space-rockers Spiritualized; New York art-rockers Blonde Redhead – but ‘headliners’ are not really the point of the festival. Rather, it’s designed as a three-day immersive “journey”, from Friday night to Sunday night. The whole should be more than the sum of its parts. “The seed was a conversation, back in 2011 or 2012, with David Anderson [then head of music programming at the A
David LaChapelle is headlining Ballarat International Foto Biennale
Ballarat International Foto Biennale (August 19-September 17) – Australia’s largest international photography festival – has announced its headliner for 2017: iconoclastic American photographer and director David LaChapelle. In a coup for incoming festival director Fiona Sweet, the Biennale will present the first LaChapelle solo exhibition in Australia, featuring around 90 of his artworks at the Art Gallery of Ballarat. And yes, the artist will be present. LaChapelle is best known for his editorial and fashion work, shooting for Interview, Rolling Stone and Vanity Fair – and collecting a who’s-who list of American celebrities over the years, including Michael Jackson, Madonna, Andy Warhol, Britney, Kanye West, Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Pamela Anderson… LaChapelle in fact started in fine art photography, studying at North Carolina School of the Arts and coming up through New York’s 1980s art scene alongside Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat. 'Kings Dominion' from the Land Scape series, 2013. Photograph: David LaChapelle After suddenly moving to Hawaii in 2006, he took up fine art photography again – so you can expect recent personal projects to feature in the Ballarat exhibition, including his 2013 series Land Scape, where he shot colour saturated hyperreal photos of model oil refineries made from garbage. Find out more about the Ballarat International Foto Biennale, and buy tickets to the LaChapelle exhibition ($8-$18).
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