PUNTERS could experience strange intergalactic noises and images when they venture through the back streets of West Perth next month.
As part of the The Pickle District After Dark Art Crawl, audiovisual artist Roly Skender is creating a bespoke projection with all sorts of weird sounds and lights.
Skender’s award-winning public artworks including the interactive digital performer The Virtual Busker, projected onto the wall of the Murray Street Mall in 2017, and large scale projections If Buildings Could Speak and LightWaves.
He’s not inspired by modern or classical artists and says philosophy, science and technology are his muse.
“I’m particularly fascinated by images from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter at the moment which shows Martian landscapes from above in surprising detail,” Skender says.
“Also, the philosophy of René Girard and mimetic theory, and of course the rapidly emerging AI machine learning technologies that are changing how we think about ourselves, consciousness and our relationship to technology and art.”
Now in its third year, The Pickle District After Dark Art Crawl features a host of local artists exhibiting and performing on the same night in galleries, studios, events spaces and a boutique theatre all within a 300m radius of each other in the Pickle District.
Nestled between the city, Leederville and Northbridge, the Pickle District is a light industrial zone that over the past decade has been transformed into a burgeoning arts hub with lots of interesting nooks and crannies.
The District’s name is taken from the Tandy’s Preserves and Pickle Factory, which operated there in 1917.
Residents would line up for pickles while complaining about the vinegar smell wafting from the factory. More than a century later, the old Pickle Factory building is still standing.
Skender says his Art Crawl projection will challenge people and encourage them to explore this secret corner of West Perth.
“It’s a slightly untamed environment not obvious for projection art (or anything else for that matter)” he says.
“So it’s not a large-scale building or wall projection of the sort that many people are used to seeing. Instead, I’m setting out to create an environment using generative sound and projection that represents a journey, a little bit like something you might experience in a dream. I hope people will be willing to explore it.”
The art crawl will also feature live performances by WAAPA students and an exciting collaboration between music group The Present and dance collective TriplOcate DMC.
Once you’ve wandered around and visited venues including Holmes à Court Gallery, Backlot Cinemas, Cleaver Street, The Deck and Fridays Studio, head to Old Habits at 9pm for the after party with live music and a dance floor.
Unlike other projects he’s worked on, Skender is able to test his projections at the site before the event: “It’s great to be given the freedom to explore in this way, since the organisers aren’t overly-prescriptive on what they want and are happy to let artists follow their intuition.”
The Pickle District After Dark Art Crawl 3.0 is on Friday May 5 from 6pm-9pm with an after party. To register for a free ticket visit eventbrite.com.au
by STEPHEN POLLOCK