My Voice 2021
My Voice was commissioned for the inaugural Hobart Current exhibition, a collaboration between the City of Hobart and the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery. Curated by Rosie Dennis, this first exhibition explores the theme of Liberty through the work of ten artists.
My response to the theme focused on the links between liberty and language. The word liberty is complex because it is not just about having total freedom – it is also about living within certain laws and bounds. It is when those bounds become overly restrictive, such as under a dictatorship, that personal liberty is at risk. A powerful way of controlling liberty is to control the use of language, and thus the voice of the people.
This project was particularly inspired by Malala Yousafzai from Pakistan, who is the youngest person to ever receive a Nobel peace prize at the age of seventeen. Despite an attempt on her life by the Taliban, and being placed under a Fatwa, she gives voice to girls who have been silenced in countries where their educational opportunities are denied or severely limited. On 12 July, 2013, at the Youth Takeover of the United Nations, Malala said:
I raise up my voice—not so that I can shout, but so that those without a voice can be heard.
Her statement is about the power of speaking up, of giving voice to the voiceless. It is about empowerment through individual expression for the collective good and stands against oppression and control.
Malala’s words have been rendered as clouds on the exterior of 85 Macquarie Street. They reflect against the limitlessness of the sky and beg the questions – whose voice? My voice, your voice, or our voice? And why should it be raised up?
85 Macquarie Street, Hobart, Tasmania
and the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery
For the inaugural exhibition:
Hobart Current: Liberty: from here to here
Part of Ten Days on the Island, 2021
12 March - 9 May 2021
One way vision signwriters vinyl on the facade of 85 Macquarie Street.
Curated by Rosie Dennis for the City of Hobart and the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery
Featuring 10 artists: Sinsa Mansell, Uncle Wes Marne, Jacob Leary, Suryo Herlambang, Sara Jane Pell, Nadege Philippe-Janon, James Newitt, Jagath Dheerasekara, Dexter Rosengrave, Brigita Ozolins.
With special thanks to
The Sypkes Group
Images: Craig Garth, Simon Ozolins, Andrew Wilson Photography, Brigita Ozolins and Gerard Willems
Drone footage by Craig Garth of the installation by Spidertech