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Performance: Untitled (Death Song)

10 - 17 April 2021
3:00pm - 4:00pm
UNSW Galleries
photo of musicians in a dark room

In this live performance, musicians activate Megan Cope’s sound installation ‘Untitled (Death Song)’

Using a range of extended musical techniques developed by instrument builder Isha Ram Das and Liquid Architecture curator Joel Stern, an ensemble of musicians activate 'Untitled (Death Song)'.

Megan Cope's installation comprises sound sculptures constructed from discarded mining and industrial equipment. The composition takes its first note from the haunting cries of the yellow-eyed Bush Stone-curlew which the musicians draw out of the instruments. An endangered species within New South Wales, the Bush Stone-curlew is known for its distinctive ghost-like “weer-lo” call, and is often mistaken for a crying baby or wailing woman. This work is a meditation on the sound of Country and Gurrell (Curlew), also known as a harbinger of death in Quandamooka culture.

“I am deeply interested in the sound of Country; if the land could sing, how might it sound? Untitled (Death Song) asks the viewer to think about the role of sound in our lives and the effect of vibration in our bodies and land. It is a work that calls for deep listening, in order to align mind and body with the earth.” — Megan Cope

Megan Cope is a Quandamooka artist whose work investigates issues relating to history, place, environment, contested territories, and power.

Isha Ram Das is a composer and sound artist concerned with ecologies of environment and culture. He works with experimental sound techniques to produce performances, installations and recordings.

Liquid Architecture is Australia’s leading organisation for artists working with sound and listening.

This program is presented in conjunction with the exhibition 'Megan Cope: Fractures & Frequencies' at UNSW Galleries from 16 January – 17 April 2021, and with the support of the Woollahra City Council.

There are two performances:

Monday 10 April, 3 to 4pm

Monday 17 April, 3 to 4pm

Register via Eventbrite

COVID-19 Safety Measures

UNSW Galleries has implemented a number of safety and hygiene measures to keep our audiences safe. This event will have limited places to comply with NSW Government recommendations. For further details on our COVID-safe plans, please visit the UNSW Galleries website.

Image Caption: Megan Cope, ‘Untitled (Death Song)’ 2020. Performance by four South Australian musicians on Kaurna country. Courtesy: the artist, Art Gallery of South Australia and Milani Gallery, Brisbane. Photo: Saul Steed