Commissioned by All About Women Festival, 2020 : The Sydney Opera House.
Curated & co-produced by Antidote Projects.
The Red Carpet is an architectural intervention and performance work, transposing a Ukrainian Bessarabian rug onto the steps of the Sydney Opera House. Within its ornamental design, The Red Carpet contains a data-map of the damaged topography of Kiev’s Maidan square protests, surveyed by the artist. The fatal pro-democracy uprising marked the beginning of Ukraine’s illegal invasion, annexation and ongoing 7 year civil war.
In combining data & textiles, The Red Carpet references a wider canon of women recording their experiences of conflict through the art mediums which were most commonly available to them across history & place: needle, loom and thread. In this way, the architectural intervention becomes a ‘red carpet’ for the Sydney Opera House – acknowledging the history and labour of women’s domestic arts as the foundation leading to ‘starchitecture.’
Given architect Jørn Utzon’s highly public relationship with the Sydney Opera House – The Red Carpet speaks in dialogue to his enthusiasm that the building be used by artists as a town square – a Maidan – of its own, and specifically as a site of artistic protest for humanitarian justice. Town-square to town-square, the work stands in solidarity between the artist’s two homes.
We acknowledge the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, as the traditional owners of the land and waters on which the following work was made – and the great pain and violence that this site holds. The following site, Tubowgule – ‘meeting of the knowledge waters’ is the tidal island where Gadigal and Eora basin communities have met, since time immemorial to dance, sing, feast, exchange knowledge and stories.