This new performance work by Australian artist Kaz Therese fuses drama and documentary to take audiences on a journey of discovery through the artist’s family history, throwing light on the intergenerational impacts of institutionalisation and migration.
Developed over the past two decades by Therese, Sleeplessness is a radically honest and empathetic look at three generations of women in the artist’s family, in an effort to recover a history that had been erased. Starting with the discovery of a death certificate for their Hungarian grandmother that mysteriously labels her dying as a German man, Therese brings audiences along for a fascinating and emotional journey as they work backwards in time to uncover the mysteries of their family. The performance follows a fractured narrative, travelling through Budapest, the history of the Forgotten Australians in the 1950s, the artist’s upbringing in Western Sydney and arriving in the present day.
Part-mystery, part-documentary, part forensic investigation, this quintessentially Australian story has been developed with support from Carriageworks and is presented there, in the former industrial workshops cum contemporary multi-arts precinct. The performance is supplemented by roundtable discussions and workshops.
Sleeplessness is showing at Carriageworks until August 14, sessions are limited.