The inaugural meeting of the Writing Teachers Western Sydney group was held at Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre on Monday, January 23. A small and enthusiastic group met to explore the New World Order exhibition that provides
an opportunity to think about how we make sense of the world in a post-internet era
by engaging with artworks that explore exposes, conspiracy theories, cybernetic tarot cards, hacked city-scapes, UFO blanket paintings, alternate currencies, illusions, paradoxes and alternate endings.
The catalogue essay concludes with:
While there is narrative, lyricism and elements of the spectacular or preposterous in the[se] works, each artist undeniably speaks the truth.
We chose an artwork and gathered ideas. I challenged myself to work with a piece that seemed to reference ancient Egyptian elements
as my passion and interest in history does not include Egyptology. I was entranced by the busyness of this work, and awed by the intricate detail of each pen stroke.
Stepping in to inspect specific components, I became overwhelmed yet noted
chains and interconnectedness, gradations and rays, blinded with eyes closed.
I pondered the symmetry and patterns, thought of backgammon and skill, balance, patience and resilience.
Despite the comfortable lounge, this proved to be a challenging writing environment. In an open cafe space with patrons of all ages, the New World Library installation also contained a small tv continually playing a video loop with dialogue. Part way through our meeting, a work crew began drilling into ceiling trusses. These sounds pervaded our writing and sharing, yet were very much in keeping with the dissonance and dystopian affect of the exhibition.
A timely reminder of the difficulties that students are sometimes expected to achieve within and despite their unseen impact. Hopefully, our next meeting in a library space near Parramatta will offer a different ambience.