Active since 2000, Liquid Architecture is a Naarm (Melbourne) based organisation supporting experimental, interdisciplinary and critical work addressing sound and listening in context.
Our program stages encounters and creates spaces for sonic experience, and critical reflection on sonority and systems of sonic affect. To do this, we host experiences at the intersection of contemporary art and experimental music, supporting artists to produce performances and concerts, exhibitions, talks, reading groups, workshops and recordings in art spaces, music venues and other sites.
Liquid Architecture is curatorially driven and our methodology embraces research, collaborations and imaginations. We want to echo beyond local conversations, problems, debates and questions, to reverberate across media and disciplines, and so to sound out new discourses about the audible world, and beyond.
We acknowledge the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung as the Traditional Owners and sovereign custodians of the Country on which we practice. We extend our respects to their Elders past and present, and to all First Peoples.
NARETHA WILLIAMS (INTERIM CO-CHAIR) is an accomplished practitioner in the Australian creative industries sector. An established artist and music producer, she is a seasoned industry professional with extensive experience across a dynamic range of appointments. Naretha has worked with leading Australian companies and First Nations initiatives, flagship festivals and events, has toured internationally and won several awards. Credits include: St Kilda Festival, Bless Your Blak Arts Festival, Australasian World Music Expo, International Symposium on Electronic Art, Yirramboi First Nations Arts Festival, Science Gallery London, Chunky Move, Performance Space New York, The Melba Spiegeltent, Melbourne Town Hall Grand Organ, Sydney Myer Music Bowl, Sydney Dance Company, and Melbourne’s Flash Forward.
DANNY BUTT (INTERIM CO-CHAIR) is Senior Lecturer in Interdisciplinary Practice at Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne, where he is also Graduate Research Convenor for Design and Social Practice. His book Artistic Research in the Future Academy was published by Intellect/University of Chicago Press in 2017, and he is on the Editorial Board of the Journal for Artistic Research.
ANDY MILLER (DIRECTOR) currently works as the General Manager of Multicultural Arts Victoria. Initially trained as a painter at the Canberra School of Art, Andy Miller worked in theatre for a number of years before working to establish arts programs in the community sector. Following a few years as an arts and cultural officer at two local governments, Andy began a career in the state public service in various senior roles at Arts Victoria and Creative Victoria and was seconded for a period with Creative Partnerships Australia, as Senior Programs Manager. As well as a Bachelor in Fine Arts, he has a Masters in Public Policy and a Graduate Diploma in Arts Management from the University of Melbourne.
MARK NOLEN (TREASURER) is a Certified Practising Accountant with extensive experience in the creative industries sector. He is currently Management Accountant at ACMI, having previously worked in a similar role at Film Victoria. Along the way, he has helped countless singers, actors, and even clowns get their taxes in order – no laughing matter! When not crunching numbers, you can find Mark sitting back with a fine drop of Scotch whisky, soaking up some even finer tunes.
LEANA PAPAELIA (SECRETARY) is a barrister at the Victorian Bar and a soprano. At the Bar, Leana practices in commercial and public law with a focus on banking and financial services regulation, corporations and securities, insolvency, trade practices and human rights. Leana holds an AMusA and a BMus (Hons) majoring in vocal performance. She received a university scholarship to complete her honours and, in her final year of study, was awarded the Horace Keats Memorial Prize for Excellence in Vocal Performance. Leana currently studies under the direction of Loris Synan OAM. Leana is a board member of the Australian Contemporary Opera Company and has held board positions with Lawyers for Animals, an organisation dedicated to improving the welfare of animals through education and law, and Right Now, an independent not-for-profit mediation organisation focusing on human rights issues in Australia.
NAOMI VELAPHI (DIRECTOR) is an arts producer born on Whadjuk Noongar country, residing in Naarm (Melbourne). She strives to nurture artists’ work and practices exploring alternative narratives, radical thought and deep connection. Centred on producing the work of contemporary, diverse, and interdisciplinary artists her experience spans working for and amongst galleries, festivals, and performance spaces. Naomi has over ten years of experience in the industry and has worked across all facets of arts production including curation, funding, and budget management and audience development. She is currently Senior Producer at Next Wave and has also held producing roles for a number of arts institutions including APAM, Arts House, The Abbotsford Convent, and Koorie Heritage Trust. Through her independent practice she aims to unearth honest and generous collaborations between artists, producers, curators, and presenters and create pathways for new work creation. Her curatorial interests are derived through her experiences as a woman of african and asian identities and the communities she represents. She holds a Masters of Arts and Cultural Management from the University of Melbourne and is a part of the Australia Council Arts Leadership Program 2020.
DAVID CHESWORTH (DIRECTOR) is an artist and composer, known for his experimental, and at times minimalist music, who has worked with electronics, contemporary ensembles, film, theatre, and experimental opera. Together with Sonia Leber, David has created installation artworks using sound, video, architecture and public participation. Exhibitions include ‘56th Venice Biennale (2015), ‘19th Biennale of Sydney (2014), and Melbourne Now, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2013-14). Festivals featuring Chesworth’s music and sound works include Ars Electronica; Festival D’Automne de Paris; Bang on a Can Marathon, New York, Biennale of Sydney; Adelaide and Melbourne Festivals; and MONA FOMA. Early in his career he was co-founder of post-punk band Essendon Airport and for five years was coordinator of the Clifton Hill Community Music Centre, Melbourne. David is a Vice-Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellow at RMIT University, Melbourne, researching auditory archives.
CAT HOPE (DIRECTOR) is a researcher, composer, performer, songwriter, and noise artist. She is a flautist and experimental bassist who plays as a soloist and as part of other groups. She is the director of and performer in Decibel: a group focused on Australian repertoire, the nexus of electronic and acoustic instruments and graphic score realisations. In 2011 and 2014, Cat won the APRA|AMC Award for Excellence in Experimental Music, and for 2014 she was resident at the Peggy Glanville Hicks composers house, and is a Civitella Ranieri and Churchill Fellow. She is co-author of Digital Art – An Introduction to New Media (Bloomsbury) and Professor of Music at Monash University.
MONICA LIM (DIRECTOR) is a Melbourne-based pianist and composer of classical contemporary and experimental music. Born in Malaysia and then migrating to Australia in her teens, Monica initially practiced as a Tax Consultant for Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, before pursuing her own interests in business and the arts. She has produced work for theatre, contemporary dance, installations, and film, as well as solo and ensemble instrumental pieces. She is interested in new cross-disciplinary genres and forms as well as combinations of new technology with music. Monica is currently undertaking a PhD at the Faculty of Fine Arts and Music, University of Melbourne in interactive technology, AI and gesture-led composition. Monica is co-founder of Project Eleven, a philanthropic initiative which supports the contemporary arts and serves on the boards of the Melbourne Recital Centre, the Substation and Liquid Architecture as well as the Member’s Council for Musica Viva.
Georgia Hutchison (Executive Director, CEO)
Debris Facility (Creative Producer)
Rohan Rebeiro (Creative Producer)
Liang Luscombe (Editor)
Mara Schwerdtfeger (Digital Producer)
Casey (Nicholls-Bull) Jones (Digital Producer)
We welcome conversation, ideas and feedback at any time.
104/35 Johnston Street
Collingwood VIC 3066
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The vegetal subject and our listening co-create each other
JUSTIN CLEMENS will read his work Rooted, and poems by others. DANNI ZUVELA will discuss listening to vegetal others. MAKIKO YAMAMOTO (AU/JP) will present her works Banana A-part; Coffee and Tobacco and Onion. NATHAN GRAY (AU/DE) will present The Station, a science-fictional lecture-performance featuring three narrators, one of whom is a tree; with reading and music from Zara Kimber.
If plants use sound (to detect and shape their environment), might it follow that they can also speak? The presumption that because we don’t hear them, they don’t have something to say – the trope of plant muteness – serves only to further other the vegetal world. This program counters plant silence through a series of engagements with plants as conversation partners, interlocutors, narrators and companions. In situating the speaking plant at ‘the fulcrum of its own world’ (Michael Marder), we encounter the problem of never knowing, or being able to know, fully, what it is to be a plant. What conditions might justify what would inevitably be a process of, if not appropriation, then at least compromise, to allow the projections of our speaking for plants? Is it possible to hold our not-knowing lightly enough to allow the vegetal subject and our listening to co-create each other?
Liquid Architecture acknowledge the support of Creative Victoria to commission Makiko Yamamoto and Nathan Gray’s work, earlier versions of which were presented in Berlin and Lofoten.
This event is one branch of the WHY LISTEN TO PLANTS? exhibition program at RMIT Design Hub. Plants know worlds, they contain worlds and they make worlds.Why Listen to Plants? is curated by Liquid Architecture co-Artistic Director Danni Zuvela, and co-presented with RMIT Design Hub.
Liquid Architecture is supported by City of Melbourne, Creative Victoria and the Australia Council for the Arts.