sallyHannah McDougall talks with artist Sally J Morgan, about her performance installation featured in The Container Series for the Performance Arcade 2013.  This new work is the latest episode in a series of works exploring memory, grief and guilt through durational performance and installation.


“I’m doing a work called ‘The Travails of the Bomb Aimer’s Daughter’. I’ve been working on this series for years now. It’s a cross between an art installation and an ‘incident’ as opposed to being a theatre piece. I quite like the idea that that there’s no real end or beginning, that audiences are more like witnesses coming across a workplace, and they can choose to observe for as long or as short as they wish…. like watching labourers build a road.

I hate talking about a work before its actually happened, because I work very hard to have the piece unfold its meaning in its own time. I believe that audiences are smart enough to engage like grown-ups and enjoy the intellectual and emotional demands I’m making of them. If you can enjoy a crossword you can enjoy art that asks you questions – there’s no fun in getting all the answers up front. I think of my work as being more like a poem than a short story, with the use of metaphor and allusion being all important.

Anyway, that said, all of my work is about mortality and futility. This piece touches on War, the fragility of warriors and the complex relationships that surround them. I dedicate it to my father who was a Bomb-Aimer in the Second World War, but in the end its about all wars, all losses, and all attempts to mend and make meaning.”

The Travails of the Bomb Aimer’s Daughter will be featured in The Performance Arcade 2013, from 14th-17th February on Wellington’s waterfront, just behind Te Papa Tongarewa.

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