VESSEL OF LIFE
Vessels of Life is an installation artwork created by Naomi Ota, Eva Ponting, Aunty Cynthia Hardie and Lyn Thorpe. It was initially developed and made for Collisions: Cross-Cultural Collaborations; a partnership project between Kaiela Arts and Shepparton Art Museum (SAM) in 2015.
Collisions: Cross-Cultural Collaborations was a community cultural development partnership project that provided an opportunity for artists from diverse cultural backgrounds to come together and collaborate in the making of art. The project involved five local Aboriginal artists partnering with established Melbourne-based contemporary artists from a range of cultural backgrounds, collaborating side-by-side, or in response to each other’s practice. The participants included: Jack Anselmi, Eric Brown, Aunty Cynthia Hardie, Eva Ponting and Lyn Thorpe with Naomi Ota, Sangeeta Sandrasegar, Vipoo Srivilasa and Joseph L Griffiths. Through the sharing of ideas, narratives and techniques, the artists engaged in an exploration of cultural difference and similarity, conflict and connection, forging relationships through the exchange of ideas and artforms. The outcome of these conversations and artistic investigations was an exhibition at SAM in December 2015.
The name ‘Collisions’ implies conflict, but in fact it was a harmonious process that produced innovative artworks that were invigorated with energy, not violence. The artworks were all experiential in their command of the white gallery space. It was not a Noah’s Art rendition of a two by two process of mix and match, marching toward salvation, but a highly sensitive set of cultural interplays that have the ability to go on and on.