Alchemy International Masterclass

ANAT’s International Masterclass for New Media Artists and Curators took place in Brisbane in May and early June 2000. 16 tutors and 42 participating artists and curators explored new media practices, critical concepts for cross cultural collaboration and generally had an extraordinary time exploring with and playing in the newly opened Brisbane Powerhouse – Centre for the Live Arts, who partnered with ANAT on the realisation of this project.

Whilst a core of the program was undertaken in a lab which ANAT installed in the Courier Mail Rooftop Terrace and function room, participants took advantage of having run of the entire building, including the Visy 200 seat theatre, rehearsal studios and a plethora of flexible exhibition, installation and performance spaces in and around the building.

Participants had 24 hour access to the equipment and the building and the Powerhouse staff provided incredible support in realising what was an amazingly diverse and surprisingly complex project, both logistically and conceptually.

The masterclass engaged with a diverse range of topics: from science discourses to Indigenous issues, to issues facing artists working in diverse cultural settings, to curatorial practice for interdisciplinary and new media practices. Of particular note was the component of the masterclass which occurred in early June which was dedicated to performance and hybrid practices. ANAT had not focused on this area in previous Summer Schools and was keen to open up a space for the development of this area of practice in the context of a cross-disciplinary project.

The project was intended as a dynamic one and there have been extraordinary opportunities for the exchange of ideas. We hope that the spaces opened up by this project will continue to
generate dialogue and exchange between the participants well into the future.

Participants for Alchemy were selected from a call for proposals distributed in late 1999 through the media, advertised in Realtime, mailed to ANAT members as well as distribution via national and international email lists. The participants were chosen through their proposals, with geographical and cultural considerations also taken into account when the final selection was made.

Brook Andrews (NSW)
Caroline Farmer (SA)
Christian Thompson (Vic)
Clare McGrogan (Qld)
Dena Curtis (NT)
Gongxin Wang (China)
Hartanto (Indonesia)
Jenny Fraser (Qld)
Jo Law (WA)
Keith Armstrong (Qld)
Kim Machan (Qld)
Mae Adams (Vic)
Megan Rainey (SA)
Monica Narula (India)
Patricia Adams (Qld)
Raewyn Turner (NZ)
Rebecca Youdell (Qld)
Sam James (NSW)
Sarah Neville (SA)
Shilpa Gupta (India)
Steve Bull (WA)
Bruce Gladwin (Vic)
Chris Dempsey (Qld)
Christiawan (Indonesia)
Deborah Lawler-Dormer (NZ)
Edwina Bartleme (Qld)
Grisha Coleman (NY)
Jane Schneider (Qld)
Jernej Kozar (Slovenia)
Kamal Krishna (Qld)
Lisa Anderson (Qld)
Mari Velonaki (NSW)
Mike Stubbs(UK)
Partha Pratim Sarker (Bangladesh)
Peter Toy (WA)
Raul Ferrera (Mexico)
Rolando Ramos (NSW)
Sarah Ryan (Tas)
Sheridan Kennedy (NSW)
Sophea Lerner (NSW)
Vanessa Mafe-Kean (Qld)

Tutors were invited to the ALCHEMY MASTERCLASS based on their level of skills and experience with new media arts. The tutors all had varied backgrounds and interests, in order to provide a healthy cross-section for the participants.The tutors were selected to provide not only technical training, but also a wider conceptual and philosophical background to new media practice:
Alexei Shulgin (Russia)
Nina Czegledy (Canada)
Mongrel (UK)
Geert Lovink (Aust and Netherlands)
John Tonkin (Aust)
Rea (Gamileroi/Wailwan)
Mike Stubbs (UK)
Sara Diamond (Canada)
Tess de Ouincy (Aust) and Laura Jordan (Aust)
Marko Peljhan (Slovenia)
Blast Theory (UK)
Shudahabrata Sengupta (India)

The project provided for an intensive and productive period for exploration, conversation and the generation of dialogue and new ideas.

The ALCHEMY MASTERCLASS was made possible by support of a wide variety of organisations providing in-kind support, including:
Blueprint Consulting (Qld)
Apple Computers (Australia)
Choice Connections (Qld)
Macromedia (Australia)
Adobe Systems Pty Ltd (Australia)
Multimedia Art Asia Pacific (Qld)
Institute of Modern Art (Qld)
Brisbane Powerhouse (Qld)

In recognition of its international and national significance, the Masterclass was generously supported by a range of government agencies. For the first time, ANAT received major support by the Canadian-based Langlois Foundation. An organisation which supports international projects dealing with Art, Science and Technology. ANAT is also grateful to Australian federal and state bodies for their continued support of its programs.

Funding for ALCHEMY was received from:
Daniel Langlois Foundation (Montreal, Canada)
Australian Film Commission (Industry & Cultural Development)
Australia Council (Emerging Artists Fund of the New Media Arts Fund)
Arts SA
NSW Ministry for the Arts
Arts Tasmania
Arts Queensland through the Queensland Artworkers Alliance
Please note these are historical sites – some links may no longer work

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