Angelica Mesiti, ‘Mother Tongue’, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, until the 8th of February 2021
Commissioned by Aarhus European Capital of Culture, Mother Tongue, a video work by the Buxton Contemporary Collection artist Angelica Mesiti, takes the songs in the Danish Højskolesangbogen (The National Folk High School Songbook) as its conceptual starting point. The Højskolesangbogen is the foundational anchor of the Danish tradition of fællessang (communal singing), which originated in the socialist movements of the late 1800s as a form of protest and is today a symbol of national identity and togetherness. To adhere to fællessang is to perform the vernacular of a collective ‘mother tongue’.
The work was produced with the participation of a range of performers from Aarhus including school children, employee’s of Aarhus Kommune, the Ramallah Boy Scouts troupe, the Jaffra Dancers, Gellerup Circus School and residents of the housing development, Gellerupparken. From popular radio hits to traditional folk songs, Somali blues, marching drills and wedding dances, Mother Tongue explores a series of communal, creative activities shared across the urban, civic and residential spaces of one European city.
The work is currently showing at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki in New Zealand until the 8th of February 2021.
Image: Angelica Mesiti Mother Tongue, 2017. Still from two-channel HD video, 18 min.
Unfinished Business: The Art of Gordon Bennett is the first large-scale exhibition of Buxton Contemporary Collection artist Gordon Bennett’s work and features 200 artworks ranging from installation and sculptural assemblage to painting, drawing, video and ceramics.
Buxton Contemporary Collection artists Louise Weaver and Stephan Bram are included in A shining light, an exhibition of new works acquired by Geelong Gallery over the past year. The exhibition takes its title from a 1986 song The shining path by British group Shriekback, and the song's opening lines resonate in this uncertain times: ‘We had lived a blessed time but we knew nothing’.