6 May 2017

collaboration with Mark Harwood, 'Liar Lyre' at the Wellcome Collection, London

In early May, London-based Australian sonic artist Mark Harwood and I collaborated on a piece for an event at the Wellcome Collection, organised by academic, poet, film curator and experimental geographer Amy Cutler. Liar Lyre saw "experimental geographers, musicians, field recordists, multi-media artists, poets and composers play with alternate ways of sound-tracking nature documentaries in live collaborations". The event was part of a weekend at the museum called Remaking Nature, and part of the preliminary public programmes to the exhibition A Museum of Modern Nature, which runs at the Wellcome from June to October. 

Mark and my collaborative performance stretched the distance between New Zealand and London through radio communication, tales of lazarus taxa, and speculations on nature and (neo)colonialism, critically re-soundtracking the first footage of the South Island takahē, or Notornis (Porphyrio hochstetteri), shot the year after its dramatic "rediscovery" in the Murchison Mountains, in 1948.  

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