In law as in practise the people are the intellectual property of the state, the physical apparatus of corporations. In Australia, history has been whitewashed into jingoistic institutionalised racism, the bastardised legacy of war for the British Empire, but also of early, often well-meaning, labour strikes (and terrorist operations) several carried out by Irish separatists (The Eureka Stockade, Ned Kelly). The performance/installation would consist of abstracted campfire stories, accompanied by video scenes of European engagement with country, and contemporary interpretations of Australian folk music. Despite the short history of European settlement, very few citizens are aware of the history of the dispossessed, let alone of the thousands of years of Indigenous History. The unofficial national anthem, "Waltzing Mathilda" was actually written about the Shearers' Strike in 1891, in which the farm owners, known as "wealthy squatters," attempted to bring in cheaper Chinese labour and further disenfranchise the population of itinerant farm workers, which laid the foundations of the labour movement and Australian Labor Party, as well as the infamous White Australia Policy. This and similar stories would be told for the wider implications for contemporary Australian culture, from the treatment of refugees to the continuing oppression of the indigenous population. Australia's history, current policies and repressive techniques would also be examined in the context of its influence on the rest of the world, such as the influence of refugee policy on conservative movements in recent elections in the United Kingdom.
Rejected Proposal: EVA International Irish Biennale