Supporting the development of new approaches to art making and engaging publics through four regional residencies.

Presented by Punctum Inc in association with
Mt Alexander Shire Council, and Bendigo Venue and Events.

Weird Sanctuaries is the title of our 2020/2021 Seedpod Residency program. In these times of flux, Weird Sanctuaries asks 'How are we all entangled?' It is intended for artists who wish to create in an environment with others from diverse disciplines and practices, and who are interested in exploring the field we find urgent to investigate - ‘the live and the gathering’. Each ‘weird sanctuary’ will in many ways be a rehearsal or practice for ‘difference without separability’; for what we do and who we are in the ‘elsewhere and otherwise’.

We created Weird Sanctuaries under our Seedpod residencies moniker because we understand the ongoing need for a safe place to test ideas, undertake experiments, develop new work, and take risks in a collegiate environment. We also like the fact that these experiments are generated outside city-based confines and institutions, challenging notions of the contemporary and regionality. 

For Wierd Sanctuaries, Punctum welcomes four artists and four works across the 2020/21 calendar which will occur in accordance with COVID restrictions across a 8-12 month period. Residency dates for each will be announced as we work together navigating borders, regions and cities as they open up and / or restrict us. It will be taking place on Dja Dja Wurrung Country on various sites and varying locations in Central Victoria. Watch this gathering space.



Hear Here by Daniele Constance & Dan Koop
Hear Here is a pop-up picnic radio station that reveals new perspectives of place.
Artists Daniele Constance and Dan Koop first tested Hear Here during a residency on the Enoggera Reservoir in Brisbane, where they interviewed all kinds of local experts - including community advocates, researchers and ecologists.
Koop says; 
“We realised the work had the potential to not only talk about place, but the times we are in. We want to more deeply explore the resonances of water, Australia’s settlement and colonising attempts to tame and control nature that often failed and think about the antiquated yet essential role of radio in a time of climate emergency.”
Punctum have invited Daniele and Dan to test their ideas and engagements at our local unofficial swimming hole, Expedition Pass Reservoir near Castlemaine fondly known as “The Res”.

Daniele is a participatory artist, art therapist and producer, with a strong focus on socially engaged art making practices. She creates artistic works that draw from direct experience and storytelling, using verbatim, documentary, contemporary and embodied performance practices. Recent highlights include working as a Producer at Bleach*; Assistant Director to David Burton with Queensland Music Festival’s ‘The Mount Isa Blast’ and participating in City of Gold Coast’s GENERATE program and Project Coordinator with Everybody Now’s ‘Gran Slam’.
Dan Koop is an Artist, Producer and Facilitator working in performance, public art and arts organisations. As an Artist he makes performance works in unusual and public spaces that engage audiences to become participants. As a Producer he has worked for contemporary multi artform venues and festivals in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and London. As a Facilitator he has curated and hosted public programs and worked with emerging artists as a mentor and teacher.


Mollusk Meditations by Jemila MacEwan in collaboration with Lichen Kelp

Mollusk Meditations is a performance/guided meditation that leads an audience through an alternative evolutionary journey, activating long dormant parts of our genome and catalysing the dawn of a new, slimier biological future.

Jemila MacEwan is an interdisciplinary artist based in New York. MacEwan is known for her intimately interwoven earthworks, sculptures and performances that build mythological narratives around meteorites, volcanoes, and glaciers. These stories engage with the emotional complexity of being human within the Holocene extinction. For us to meet the challenges brought on by a world in change, MacEwan asserts we must shed the layers of denial that separate humans from the natural environment to recognize nature as a diverse network of powerful and animated forces, that deserves our attention, trust and respect.

Lichen Kelp works with scientific principles of experimentation, colour chemistry and chemical reactions to investigate the materiality of process, replicating changing weather patterns and reimagining nature. Fluid and subversive experiments and performances arise and result in submersive liquid paintings combining bubbling solutions and localised flora. Otherworldly landscapes created by domestic ingredients and a lurid botanical palette disrupt our notions of beauty and the (un)natural. Lichen Kelp's practice encompasses performance, photography, musical collaboration, curating artist residencies and group shows and public engagement through workshops, group actions and publications.

Coil by re:group
Coil explores the difficulty for emerging artists to create experimental new work in ensembles. In doing so, it speaks to people and industries deemed ‘unviable’ in the face of oncoming waves of automation and the loneliness in technological supersedure. Re-Group performance collective make live cinema works using cameras, projectors, and a video mixer. While the audience sees on screen an uninterrupted film, they also watch a frenetic hustle in order to make each shot count in the time of the recording shots, playing them back in a new sequence, and cutting between this and a live camera. Weird Sanctuaries offers a final stage development at the Phee Broadway Theatre.

re:group performance collective are Carly Young, Jackson Davis, Steve Wilson-Alexander (pictured), and Solomon Thomas. A multidisciplinary group of artists based in Hobart and Sydney. Inspired by the highs and lows of pop culture, they make ambitious, large-scale, live cinematic performances that are deliberately accessible and formally rigorous. With a shared passion for theatre and film, re:group brings together four friends with harmonious skills and a collaborative drive to stage work they want to see.

Burn the Apocalypse (Working Title) by Samantha Bews
apocalypse n. from the Greek apokalupis – to uncover an unveiling or unfolding of things not previously known and which could not be known apart from the unveiling.

This project asks; How can we think clearly about The Apocalypse? Can we confront it face on? Would this help us to think more clearly about the urgent problems at hand? How do we chart our way through this territory, both metaphoric and literal? Can we test, pre-empt, foresee this ‘unveiling’?

This project is rooted in an experience of living with the daily uncertainty, collapse and crisis that accompanies chronic illness and possibly involves a tardis.

Samantha Bews is a theatre artist working across numerous roles including installation artist, actress and writer.  Her most recent work investigated the experience of, and prejudice associated with, dementia, including the theatre installation The Language My Mother Speaks which explored advance dementia and consciousness. She is currently investigating alternat modes of consciousness with the aim of creating dementia inclusion, and the expression of a multi-dimensional, interconnected reality. She reemerges into the arts sector after living with chronic illness for 21 years.