I enjoy of visiting Cockatoo island especially when it is related to arts events. This desolate place with eerie and chilly buildings turns into the unique festival mood adding ‘underground’, ‘contemporary’, ‘fringe’ and ‘avant garde’. So here is the ‘Underbelly arts festival’.
Young artists with various forms of art practice not limited to visual, performance, video, installation and experimental arts opened this weekend arts party with what they had done for a 2 week residency on Cockatoo island. Among these fresh digital & analogue interactive arts, the highlight of the party was ‘Party Mode’ by ‘Zingen’. To get into the party, people sign their name and agree with the terms and conditions which you can’t find any on the sheet of paper. To get a drink and access the VIP area, people give away their personal information. It was a brilliant, fun concept to send the message of awareness in this digital social networking society with floating and leaking of personal information which you never know where it flows to. We are blinded by a visual appearance with the hidden propaganda.
I could sense that these ‘Underbelly’ artists are ‘Beautiful losers’* who go forward with D.I.Y. arts which is the reason for their survival.
* 2008 documentary film directed by Aaron Rose about a collective group of artists who began a movement in the art world using ‘do-it-yourself’ aesthetics.