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Leisuretime I – Aaron Claringbold & Rebecca McCauley

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Event description

Leisuretime I is a photographic intervention inside an operating tourist ferry on the Birrarung/Yarra River, led by your friendly guide Catherine Ryan. Jump on board and join us in reflecting on the ways that photography has shaped contemporary understandings and uses of ‘natural’ spaces within the floodplains now known as Melbourne.

Float along the river seated within a camera obscura, disembodied from the outside world, and experience your surroundings reversed and upside-down, projected onto the vessel walls. Cruise with our guide as we take in some of the sights this city has to offer; floating riverside bars, outdoor BBQs, million-dollar properties, yoga in the park, and the oldest and largest surviving single dock in the world; asking, why did we get here, and how?

Commissioned by Next Wave for Next Wave Festival 2020. ‘Leisuretime I’ is supported by the City of Melbourne Arts Grants Program 2020, Creative Victoria and Regional Arts Victoria through the Sustaining Creative Workers Initiative, the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body, and RMIT through its Photo Futures Lab.


This production takes place on a boat that will travel down a river. Audience members will be in an enclosed  dark space on a boat for the entirety of the show and will not be able to leave the boat for the duration of the performance. There will be low visibility during the performance, and audience members who experience claustrophobia and/or motion sickness are encouraged to contact Next Wave with any questions. Unfortunately this show is not wheelchair accessible. 

Aaron Claringbold and Rebecca McCauley are artists currently based in Naarm/Melbourne. Starting from a place of photographic practice, the pair bring together shared interests to explore land, land use, ecology and human presence within modern day ‘Australia’. Reflecting on their shared positionality as settler-descendant white Australians, they are interested in how we form ideas (and who benefits from these ideas) of nature and wildness. They have a particular interest in practices that centre place-based bonding and responsibility, and that complicate the myriad of essentialisms underpinning the Australian Colonial Project.

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