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Political identity

In two exhibitions, Brute Force >> Merge Sort and Ask Us What We Want, artist Jason Wing explores issues of bi-cultural and indigenous political identity, calling into question our understanding of history, our current socio-political reality and obsession with technology leading to data-led dehumanisation.

Jason Wing, Brute Force >> Merge Sort, 2017, video still.

Photo: Supplied

Wing says Brute Force >> Merge Sort is “hatched from my experience marching in the 2017 Invasion Day protest. Surrounded by police, we were being filmed. Upon asking of the purpose of the filming, I was threatened with being arrested and obstruction: Move on. We were marching peacefully and yet we were being intimidated. Why were they filming? What is the purpose of this data collection? This violation of privacy reduces us to data: a constant reproducing of the dehumanisation of Aboriginal people, from the early ethnographic portraits to the Basics Card of the Northern Territory Intervention. Algorithms and cultural profiling are the new forms of control.”

In Ask Us What We Want, Wing explores how social media can bypass mainstream media while mobilising and empowering Aboriginal people.

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Opens at PhotoAccess, Griffith, on June 27. Until July 22.

Interpreted in print

Tim, Tom E, Harry, Rusty, Tiger and Pussycat wins the best exhibition title of the year so far, introducing viewers to some of the wonderful and talented characters making art in the bush in the Northern Territory, the Kimberley and the APY Lands across the top of South Australia.

Master printmaker Basil Hall has been running workshops in six remote communities and this exhibition showcases etchings, woodblock prints, screen prints or combinations of the above that have been drawn, carved or painted by the contributing artists during the workshops.

Hall has hand-printed the original works of art, exposing the artists painted layers onto zinc plates or silkscreens in order to print the etchings and screen prints: colour over colour in small editions. The woodblocks are rolled up with an ink-laden roller for each print and then run through a press to get the image to transfer onto quality paper.

Tim, Tom E., Harry, Rusty, Tiger and Pussycat: Recent works on paper with Basil Hall, at the Nancy Sever Gallery until July 22.

Finnish films

David Stratton is curating a program of Aki Kaurismäki films for a special screening at the National Film and Sound Archive.

“Kaurismäkis studies of Finlands battlers unfold without resorting to histrionics or overt emotion,” Stratton says.

“Often using the same actors, he has created a world in which ordinary people overcome all the odds stacked against them to achieve modest successes. The dialogue in his films is laconic and laced with stoic humour; he is committed to the use of plain language. There isnt a streak of sentiment, despite the presence in almost every movie of a lovable dog.”

Screenings will take place from June 29 until July 11. Arc cinema, NFSA, Acton. Tickets: $15, $13. Season Pass for 10 films: $100/$90. Book online at nfsa.gov.au.

Beast mode

Tuggeranong Arts Centres Fresh Funk program presents an urban dance remake of Beauty and the Beast.

More than 300 dancers will take to the stage showcasing hip hop, urban and contemporary dance, mixed with musical theatre.

Local talents Jessica Gowing as Belle, Isaiah Chadwick as Gaston and Tim Walshe as the Beast all started with Fresh Funk as juniors and now tutor other students.

This blockbuster show is the end-of-semester performance for dancers aged 9 years to adult in Fresh Funk's performance program.

At the Tuggeranong Arts Centre on June 30. Tickets: $28 adult, $20 concession, or $88 family (2+2).

Tickets and details online at tuggeranongarts.com

Karen Hardy

Karen Hardy is a reporter at The Canberra Times.

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