Antipodean Epic is a poetic journey that incorporates grain both in abundance and scarcity. Costume has enabled three characters, or creatures, as a means to ask: Are the creatures the end of their species or the beginning of another? Are they displaced or transported viral entities? Are they unwanted interlopers within the seed stock? Are they the carriers of a potential future or remnants of a distant past or both?
Jill Orr has delighted, shocked and moved audiences through her performance installations which she has presented in cities such as Paris, Beijing, Hong Kong, Amsterdam, Antwerp New York, Toronto, Quebec City, Graz, Hong Kong, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Brisbane from the late nineteen seventies to now. Orr’s work centres on issues of the psycho- social and environmental where she draws on land and identities as they are shaped in, on and with the environment be it country or urban locales. Orr’s early iconic work Bleeding Trees has led to commissions such as Marriage of the Bride to Art, Raising the Spirits, Exhume the Grave, Hunger, The Myer Windows, The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters, Goya and Ash, to name only a few works which have contributed to the contemporary cultural landscape. Orr grapples with the balance and discord that exists at the heart of relations between the human spirit, art and nature.
In 2004 Jill Orr created From the Sea about the wild shipwreck coastline of Warrnambool. This panoramic video installation was in created in collaboration with the Gunditmara Aboriginal Community from Warrnambool. From the Sea began a body of work that traces overlapping histories of indigenous and non- indigenous relations to place. She has recently completed The Crossing, which was presented for the 2007 Mildura and Wentworth Festival.
Orr was represented in the inaugural Venice International Performance Art Week in 2012 where she presented The Promised Land to international acclaim. She has since been one of ten international performance artists to present at the Bipolar Performance Art Meeting in Sopot, Poland 2014. Orr has mesmerized audiences with her most recent work, Trilogy 1 for the MAP Festival, Melaka, Malaysia, 2014 and Trilogy 2, for the 2015 performance for Performance Presence, Video Time at the AEAF, Adelaide. Jill Orr is a recent recipient of the Australia Council Fellowship and will present the inaugural Antipodean Epic for the 2015 Mildura Palimpsest #10 and her introduction to Fehily Contemporary, Melbourne.
“Jill Orr is a fiery artist and her work expresses the beauty, power and spiritual depth that is her trade mark.” – Helen Vivian, Catalogue essay Jill Orr, Ash – Independent Curator, Producer and Publisher, Director, Artmoves Inc.
Represented by: Fehily Contemporary
The Australia Council Fellowship and Mildura Palimpsest Biennale #10 have made this production possible.
Photographer: Christina Simons
Video Producer: Jason Heller
Cinematographer: Dave McKinnar
Costume: Alison Kelly
Farm shoot location and assistance: Collin Hunt
Gypsum mine location: Clint McArthur
Bowl: Fiona Orr
Assistants: Rosina Byrne with Tom, Dan and Michael
Helen Vivian and Tasco Inland