Arts News

2017 Asialink Arts Residency Information Sessions: Launceston & Hobart

The 2017 round of applications for Asialink Arts Residencies opens on 29 August and closes on 30 September 2016. Interested in applying? Asialink will be conducting information session in Tasmania  in Hobart and Launceston this August.

At each session Arts Residency Program Manager Eliza Roberts will provide an overview of the program and application process before having a discussion with a past Asialink resident about their tips and experiences.

Monday 8 August, 5.30pm  
Meeting Room IR.192
Tasmanian College of the Arts, Inveresk
4 Invermay Rd, Launceston

Tuesday 9 August, 5.30pm
Boardroom, Arts Tasmania
146 Elizabeth St, Hobart

Places are limited so please RSVP immediately to confirm your place at either the Launceston or Hobart session:

Since 1991 Asialink's Arts Residency Program has provided professional development opportunities for arts professionals working across art form, in exchange for the sharing of skills, knowledge and networks with local host communities.

An Asialink Arts Residency grant of up to $12,000 for three months goes towards travel, living and project expenses, and affords recipients the opportunity for in-depth research, stimulating cultural exchanges, international collaboration and uninterrupted time for creativity.

Image credit: Laura working in Tatami room, Laura Hindmarsh & Dylan Sheridan, 2015 Asialink Residency. Photo by Dylan Sheridan.

Australian artist, curator and chef to participate in the 2016 Setouchi Triennale, Japan

Naomi Eller (VIC), Joanna Bosse (VIC), Adam Liaw (NSW)

Asialink Arts is proud to participate in the Setouchi Triennale, 2016. The arts festival takes place across 12 islands located in the Seto Inland Sea, Japan. Artist Naomi Eller will present a site specific project to coincide with the official summer festival launch on the 18th of July, exhibiting work alongside artists from Korea, Indonesia, Thailand, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

Curated by Joanna Bosse, the Melbourne based duo are currently on residency on the Island of Shodoshima, known for its spectacular scenery. Working with local stone, Naomi is creating an immersive installation using a combination of ceramic sculptures, stone and collage in a re-purposed elementary school.

Based in a region experiencing economic decline and an aging population, the triennale uses art for social change in an approach that combines art, food, architecture and nature. Since its inception in 2010, the festival has not only been highly successful in attracting large audiences, but has also been responsible for an increase in residents moving back to affected areas.

Projects will continue to roll out in 2016, when Australian chef Adam Liaw travels to the region in August. Well-known in Australia and Japan, Adam will work with Fukuda locals through a workshop featuring Modern Australian cuisine made from local ingredients sourced on the Island. His workshop recipes will be offered at a community-run Ryue Nishizawa designed restaurant for the duration of the Triennale.

This is Asialink’s second inclusion in the Setouchi Triennale, and cements a longstanding relationship with festival organisers Art Front Gallery and the Fukutake Foundation. Previous Asialink residents to the Setouchi Triennale include artist Jackson Slattery and Chef Andrew McConnell (2013). Asialink has also participated in Setouchi’s sister festival, the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennial through resident Ulanda Blair (2012) and Snuff Puppets (2015).


Zhiling Gao’s writing residency in Beijing

Images by Zhiling Gao

A child of 1960s China, Melbourne based Zhiling Gao is a freelance interpreter, literary translator, language teacher, author and broadcaster. While on residency in Beijing, Zhiling is working on a third draft of her manuscript A Bag Of Power, set in Inner Mongolia, China, during the Cultural Revolution. As a social memoir it explores the behaviour of ordinary people under extraordinary social circumstances.

During her residency Zhiling is researching the transformation of her parents and her own generation by social and political forces, collecting material from libraries, Universities and face-to-face interviews. She recently conducted a research trip from Beijing to Inner Mongolia, where she presented talks arranged by the embassy.

Based at the Beijing Bookworm, Zhiling took part in the Bookworm Literary Festival and Australian Writers Week as a panel moderator and translator. The events presented an opportunity to meet fellow authors from Australia and China, and international guests from further afield. At the time Zhiling stated:

“Beijing Bookworm sits in the heart of Beijing. It is a most unusual bookstore of any kind. It’s a café, restaurant and bar, and books from floor to roof. People come to drink, eat, chat, read and leave with books to borrow or buy. It’s a real bustling hive of literary activity. I am very fortunate to be here for the writing residency to experience the Literary Festival and Australian Writers Week.”

Zhiling Gao’s childhood and early adult years were spent in China, from 1959 to 1986. She studied and taught English language and literature before immigrating to Australia in 1987. Familiar with Chinese literary conventions, traditions and preoccupations, the author aspires to establish ongoing ties in China and tell stories that will be valued by both cultures.


Asialink at the 2016 Setouchi Triennale, Japan

Image: Setouchi Triennale participants, Naomi Eller, Joanna Bosse and Adam Liaw

Joanna Bosse (VIC), Naomi Eller (VIC), Adam Liaw (NSW)

Asialink will represent Australia at the 2016 Fukutake House Asia Art Platform, Setouchi Triennale, with six other arts residency centres from the Asian region. Based in a Japanese region experiencing economic decline and an aging population, the triennale uses art for social change in a multidisciplinary approach that combines art, food, architecture and nature.

Australian based curator Joanna Bosse and visual artist Naomi Eller will present a site specific project to coincide with the official Summer festival launch on the 18th of July. Sarah Bond, Asialink’s Director of Visual Arts, says “This is an amazing opportunity for an Australian curator and artist to develop a targeted project for Japan that will contribute to the ongoing regeneration of the Setouchi region, while representing current Australian art practice”.

Responding to the festival theme of globalisation, Joanna and Naomi will collaborate with the local Fukuda community to present an exhibition of ceramics, granite and collage works that consider local histories, materials and the Shodoshima island landscape.

Projects will continue to roll out in 2016, when Australian chef Adam Liaw travels to the region. Well-known in Australia and Japan, Adam will work with Fukuda locals in a series of workshops featuring Modern Australian cuisine made from local ingredients sourced on the island. His workshop recipes will be offered at a community-run Ryue Nishizawa designed restaurant for the duration of the Triennale.

Since its inception in 2010, the festival has not only been highly successful in attracting large audiences, but has also been responsible for an increase in residents moving back to affected areas.


Inaugural Craft Exchange: John White and Takeyoshi Mitsui

Left: John White and Takeyoshi Mitsui Right: John White Solo Exhibition "Between one place and Another"

The first half of Asialink Arts inaugural craft-focused reciprocal residency between Australia and Japan will conclude with a solo exhibition by ACT based glass artist John White at Toyama Glass Art Museum, Japan.

For a six week period John White has been based at Toyama Glass Studio, developing new works based on research into local inventions and innovations.

“This six week residency has provided me a wonderful opportunity to develop my professional art practice. In particular my interest was to research Japanese fabric dye (notably Shibori) patterns and ways to translate them into Venetian glass techniques. The work in this exhibition is an abstraction of the Shinkansen train system, representing how two cultures have travelled together. On each end of the cylinders are patters that explore these Shibori ideas and in particular two of which that make direct reference to our two country’s floral symbols.”

Referencing the Australian Wattle and the Japanese Cedar in the works, the exhibition is the culmination of hours spent in the workshop, and an immersive six weeks with fellow glass artist Takeyoshi Mitsui.

The second half of the craft exchange will take place at Canberra Glassworks, Australia.  From the 13th of June, Japanese artist Takeyoshi Mitsui will spend six weeks developing new work informed by his experience of Australian nature.


Kerjasama: Exchange Residency between Australia and Indonesia launches in Alice Springs

Image: Tony Albert. Once upon a time... (Installation View) 2014, mixed media on paper, dimensions variable.

Asialink Arts is pleased to announce the launch of the 2016 Kerjasama or ‘Collaborate’ residency between Australian Indigenous artist Tony Albert and Indonesian artist Timoteus Anggawan Kusno. Asialink will partner with Cemeti Art House in Yogyakarta and Artback NT in Alice Springs to offer this unique opportunity. For the next 6 weeks Kusno will join Albert in Alice Springs where they will share their arts practice with one another and connect with local Indigenous and non-Indigenous organisations. In September Albert will join Kusno for 6 weeks at Cemeti Art House, Yogyakarta.

Kerjasama is a crucial platform for Asialink to increase awareness of the Arts Residency Program to Indigenous applicants, and a means of supporting reciprocal residencies for Indonesian artists to Australia who have no governmental support. The program was also developed in response to the significant interest expressed by Asian artists to experience the Australian desert and increase their understanding of Indigenous and regional communities.

The 2016 Kerjasama exchange marks the third year of the program.  It launched in 2014 with recipients Reko Rennie (Indigenous-Australian) and Akiq AW (Indonesian) and followed in 2015 with Karla Dickens (Indigenous-Australian) and Doni Maulistya (Indonesian). A publication documenting the full Kerjasama program is planned for late 2016.

Supported by the Australian Government through the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Program, an initiative of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Arts NT.

Asialink Arts Annual Report 2015-16

Click here for full report

Asialink Arts Year in Review 2015

Asia-Capability Delegation for VIC Multi-Arts professionals

Tokyo and Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale, Japan, 9 – 17 August 2015

Members of the Asialink/New Zealand Foundation delegation to Japan, Echigo Tsumari Art Triennale 2015 with the Australian Ambassador Mr Bruce Miller. Photo: Australian Embassy, Tokyo.

This year through Asialink’s Arts Residency Laboratory, which trials new models of residencies, four members of performing arts group Snuff Puppets (VIC) undertook an intensive one-month residency at Australia House in Niigata Prefecture, Japan. The group worked with the local community to build large-scale puppets that was showcased during the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale (ETAT). ETAT is a triennial international arts festival that uses art as a tool to draw attention to the declining economy and ageing population of the region. This residency project was built on Asialink’s participation in the Fukutake House Asia Art Platform, Setouchi Triennale 2013, and was supported by Art Front Gallery, the Australia-Japan Foundation and the Australian Embassy, Tokyo.

Asialink facilitated a delegation for Victorian arts professionals to Tokyo and ETAT during the time of Snuff Puppets’ key performances. The delegation encompassed a combination of compulsory meetings and self-guided tours, and ran alongside a delegation for New Zealand visual arts curators organised by the Asia-New Zealand Foundation. The purpose of the trip was to research and develop professional networks and partnerships culminating in a series of reciprocal projects for future delivery, including 2016. The aim was to provide participants with the confidence and capacity to work in and with Japan in a meaningful and ongoing manner, and enhance the Asia-capability of the arts and cultural sector for urban and regional Victoria.

Key Dates
* 23 July – 27 August: Snuff Puppets Residency in Japan
* 26 July – 13 September: Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale
* 9 – 17 August: Delegation in Tokyo and Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale
* 14 – 15 August: Snuff Puppets Roaming performances during community ‘Obon’ festivals
* 16 August: Snuff Puppets Major performance at Noh Butai

Asialink Arts Alumni STORIES

Asialink Arts proudly presents the first video of our Arts Alumni video STORIES series. The series documents the powerful anecdotes behind many of the Asialink projects over the last 25 years. In this first video Bindi Cole Chocka recounts her involvement in Shadowlife, Asialink Arts touring exhibition curated by Djon Mundine OAM and Natalie King, which toured to Thailand, Taiwan, Singapore in 2012-13.


New Colombo Plan Mobility Program

Together with the University of Melbourne's Global Mobility and Faculty of the Arts, Asialink Arts was successful in a bid to pilot the Australian Government's New Colombo Plan for two students to Indonesia in 2015. The New Colombo Plan is a reverse of the 1950s initiative the Colombo Plan, which saw students from Asia undertake intensive study opportunities in Australia. Many of these students went on to become experts in their field and unofficial Ambassadors of Australia.

Asialink's Arts Residency Program will be adapted to enable the successful Australian students the professional development opportunity to spend four weeks in Yogyakarta contributing to projects at Cemeti Art House. The students will have access to Asialink's alumni network of over 800 arts professionals and will be inducted to the program with in-country contacts and information. There is also the potential to connect with other Asialink partner organisations such as the Yayasan Biennale Yogyakarta, Kunci Cultural Studies Center and Indonesia Visual Art Archive (IVAA).

Meet Louise Choi and Jacob Mulligan who were successful in obtaining this residency in Indonesia.

Cemeti Art House - Yogyakarta

CAH Photo                                            

Since 1988, Cemeti Art House has been actively communicating and stimulating the art practices of contemporary Indonesians, as well as International artists. The organisation's mission is to empower and develop visual arts infrastructure in Indonesia and as such is an important centre for contemporary visual arts practice in Yogyakarta. Artists will be expected to give occasional lectures and workshops and to work with Indonesian curators and artists.


Asialink Arts Congratulates residency and exhibitions alumni selected for the 56th Venice Biennale

Australian Pavilion

56th Venice Biennale


Fiona Hall (Asialink Arts exhibitions A Transit Through Paradise 1999 and Living Together is Easy 2004, resident to Sri Lanka 2002)
featured as a solo artist in the new Australian Pavilion.

Daniel Boyd (Asialink Arts exhibition project to 2014 Kochi-Muziris Biennale)
included in
All the World's Futures, curated by Okwui Enwezor

Emily Floyd (Asialink  Arts resident to India 2002)
included in
All the World's Futures, curated by Okwui Enwezor

Reko Rennie (Kerjasama Indigenous and Regional Residency between Australia and Indonesia 2014)
included in
Personal Structures: Time, Place, Futures, Plazzo Mora

9 May - 22 November 2015

2013 Asialink Arts reciprocal resident to Laverton (WA), Archana Hande

VIDEO: In 2013 Archana Hande undertook an Asialink Arts reciprocal residency. Traveling from Bangalore, India to the remote town of Laverton, Western Australia, her experience and interaction with the community demonstrates the value of new ideas which develop when an outsider takes up residence and communicates through the medium of art.

China Unlimited: Understanding the Museum Boom in China

Hear Lesley Alway, Director Asialink Arts, lead a discussion on the museum boom in China with Kigsley Jayasekera from Hong Kong's West Kowloon Cultural Districe and architectural author Claire Jacobson.


Clare Jacobson, Author, New Museums in China and Kingsley Jayasekera, Director, Communications, Marketing & Digital, West Kowloon Cultural District, Hong Kong Chaired by Lesley Alway, Director, Asialink

Asialink Arts- 2014 Year in Review

2014 Year in Review

Click here for 2014 Year in Review

Janji: Indonesia 2014 and beyond

Asialink Arts Annual Report 2013-14


Total Asialink Arts audience 2013-14 : 363,331 across 14 countries. Top audience numbers by city: Melbourne: 38,273, Taipei 29,673, Beijing 76, 068, Shodoshima 196,577. Click here to see the infographic.

Total number of Asialink Arts partnerships in Asia and Australia 2013-14: 56 total partnerships. The most partnerships occurred in Australia followed by 6 in Japan, 5 in India and 5 in Indonesia. Click here to see the infographic.

Types of activities conducted 2013-14: 178 in total. These included 38 residencies, artist talks, exhibitions and exhibition openings and previews, launches, professional development, research and networking, an award,  public screenings, project launches, a research report launch, conferences, performances, public programs, a curatorial master class, a forum, presentations and round tables, publication launches and multiple touring exhibitions.

Number of countries worked in 2013-14: Fourteen in total: China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, India, Vietnam, Cambodia, Singapore, Turkey, Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia and India. Click here to see the infographic.

Number of cities worked in 2013-14: 38 cities across 14 countries.


MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA 16 July 2014- Asialink Arts and BUS Projects are pleased to launch Put up a Signal, the publication following the 2013 screen exhibition.

Published in both English and Bahasa Indonesia, this publication features essays by Jessica O'Brien, Channon Goodwin, Agung Nugroho Widhi, Tara Cook, Madeleine King, Edwin Jurriëns, Nella Themelios and Kim Brockett. Put Up a Signal has been designed by Simon Browne and printed at Dawn Press.

The Put Up a Signal project began in 2013 as a multifaceted artist exchange project, exploring Indonesian and Australian screen-based art. Presented in partnership with Bus Projects and Ruang MES 56, the project exploited the ease with which video, image, text and sound files can be shared across the world to create opportunities for richer collaboration and exchange.

BEIJING, CHINA 22 May 2014- Ahead of the official opening of 'Broached Retreat' at Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, HE Ms Frances Adamson, Australian Ambassador to the People's Republic of China previewed the exhibition with Asialink Arts and the Broached Commissions designers.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA9-14 May 2014: Asia-Australia-Europe Creative Residency Network

From 9 – 14 May 2014, Asialink Arts hosted a program of cultural mobility meetings and events focused on the regions of Asia, Australia and Europe. A summary of the program follows:

9 May
Meeting 1: Mapping and Assessment
The Inaugural Meeting of the Asia-Australia-Europe Creative Residency Network (AAECRN)

The meeting, supported by the programme ASEF Creative Networks of the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), was selected for support from over 50 proposals submitted through a competitive open call in 2013. The meeting was organized by Res Artis, in partnership with Asialink and the National Association of the Visual Arts (NAVA).

On 9 May 2014, 16 participants from cultural mobility advocacy groups, funding bodies, residency organisatons and networks from Australia, Asia and Europe gathered at Asialink in Melbourne to hold a meeting around the concepts of 'Mapping' and 'Assessment' of arts residencies.

Download the Report

View PowerPoint Presentations

Res Artis MAY 9 10mins from Asialink Video on Vimeo.

10 - 11 May

Next Wave Festival Immersion Program

Next Wave, a biennial contemporary arts festival that takes place within a two-year cycle. The artistic theme for 2013-14 was 'How do we care about things we're not interested in? How does this narrowing affect what we imagine?'

11 May

Soft Diplomacy Forum: Wheeler Centre

In partnership with The Wheeler Centre and Asialink Arts, Arts Centre Melbourne hosted Soft Diplomacy, a public forum to explore: who is leading the soft power agenda; what demographics Australians are influencing, and; where the future is headed for creative diplomacy initiatives.

Moderated by Doug Hall AM, the panel included Katelijn Verstraete, Regional Director Arts & Creative Industries, British Council East Asia; Parmesh Shahani, CEO Godrej India Culture Lab; Rei Maeda, Senior Coordinator, Art Front Gallery, Japan; and Kate Ben-Tovim, Creative Producer.

Watch the video online here

12 May

Meeting 2: Access and Reciprocity

The Inaugural Meeting of the Asia-Australia-Europe Creative Residency Network (AAECRN)

The meeting, supported by the programme ASEF Creative Networks of the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), was selected for support from over 50 proposals submitted through a competitive open call in 2013. The meeting was organized by Res Artis, in partnership with Asialink and the National Association of the Visual Arts (NAVA).

The meeting was organized by On The Move, Res Artis and Asialink, in partnership with the National Association of the Visual Arts (NAVA). On The Move was approached by the Australia Council for the Arts, co-host and organizer of the IETM Asia Satellite Meeting to facilitate the brainstorming meeting between cultural mobility funders and stakeholders from Europe, Asia and Australia.

On 12 May 2014, 49 participants from cultural mobility advocacy groups, funding bodies, residency organisatons and networks from Australia, Asia and Europe gathered at Asialink in Melbourne to hold a meeting around the concepts of 'Access' and 'Reciprocity' in relation to arts residencies and cultural and artistic exchange more broadly.

Download the Report

View PowerPoint Presentations

Res Artis MAY12 10mins WEB from Asialink Video on Vimeo.

Download the On The Move report on 'Access and Reciprocity: A brainstorming meeting with cultural mobility stakeholders in Melbourne (Australia)'

12 – 14 May

IETM Asian Satellite Meeting, Melbourne

In May 2015 the IETM Asian Satellite in Australia gathered performing artists, professionals and funders from three continents to increase international understanding, collaboration and engagement. Participants were engaged in a dynamic exchange of expertise in collaboration in an international context, provided with practical information, tools and ideas on how to empower the contemporary arts sector, how to support emerging artists, etc.

View IETM list of participants and program

View documentation of The Australia Council for the Arts IETM Satellite Meeting Melbourne

12 May

IETM panel discussion 'On Residencies'

A survey of key international residency centres – new program models for a new environment.

Presentations by key arts residency centres in Australia, Asia and Europe; followed by a panel discussion chaired by Res Artis and Asialink and an opportunity for Q & A.


- Mario A. Caro, Res Artis (Chair)

- Eliza Roberts, Asialink (Chair)

- Crystal Ruth Bell, China Residencies/Res Artis

- Marie Fol, TransArtists/DutchCulture, Amsterdam

- Margaret Shiu, Bamboo Curtain, Taiwan

- Lea O'Loughlin, ACME Studios, UK

- Fumi Yokobori, Dance Box/ON-PAM, Japan

Read more about 'Mapping Mobility in Melbourne' and view meeting notes on Res Artis' website.

"This project is supported by the programme ASEF Creative Networks of the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF). This project was selected for support from over 50 proposals submitted through a competitive open call in 2013."

On the Move has been approached by the Australia Council for the Arts, host and co-organiser of the IETM Asia Satellite Meeting to facilitate the brainstorming meeting between cultural mobility funders and stakeholders from Europe, Asia and Australia. This event is organised in cooperation with RES ARTIS and Asialink partners of the Inaugural Meeting of the Asia Europe Australia Creative Residency Network.

In conversation with 2013 Istanbul Biennale curator Fulya Erdemci, Dr Charles Green & Dr Rebecca Coates

On 31 March Asialink Arts hosted a conversation between 2013 Istanbul Biennale curator Fulya Erdemci, Dr Charles Green & Dr Rebecca Coates at The University of Melbourne.

Having recently curated the 13th Istanbul Biennial, Fulya shared her extensive knowledge of the contemporary art scene and infrastructure of Turkey and beyond.

BANDUNG, INDONESIA March 2014 - Asialink Arts new touring exhibition Vertigo: Chaos and dislocation in contemporary Australian art opened at Galeri Soemardja, Bandung Institute of Technology, on March 20, 2014.  The opening was attended by more than 200 guests and curator Claire Watson, artist Kiron Robinson and tour manager Louise Joel held three day workshops with students on curating, art development and arts management.

On the eve of the tour ABC journalist Kesha West met with Claire Watson and three of the artists to discuss the exhibition and why working in Asia is important.

The exhibition opening also received several mentions in the local Indonesian press: Tribun News, Pikiran-Rakyat Online, Bandung Cyber City, Harian Jogja, info bdg and Market Buzz.

MELBOURNE, March 2014.  Asialink Arts is pleased to launch the catalogue for the new touring exhibition Vertigo: Chaos and dislocation in contemporary Australian art.  Curated by Claire Anna Watson the exhibition is presented in partnership with Blindside gallery.

Vertigo presents works by ten of Australia's most cutting edge contemporary artists: Boe-lin Bastian, Cate Consandine, Simon Finn, Justine Khamara, Bonnie Lane, Kristin McIver, Kiron Robinson, Kate Shaw, Tania Smith, and Alice Wormald.

The artists interrogate contemporary life, exploring the fracture, chaos and dislocation that arises in the human condition and in a world which is imbued with flux and change. The experience of dizziness and a loss of perspective are explored within a world that is gripped by an acceleration of time and pace.

Presenting sculptural works, collage, drawing and video, the artists disrupt the ordinariness that can pervade life, building new narratives of human experience. By conveying feelings of anxiety and humour, or by using absurd gestures, the artists in Vertigo attempt to make sense of the world around them, with dizzying effects.

JAPAN, 25 February – 5 March 2014.  After the success of our involvement in Fukutake House Asia Art Platform, Setouchi Triennale 2013, Asialink Arts was invited to return to Japan in February 2014 by Art Front Gallery and the Fukutake Foundation to report on our participation and discuss future collaborations. Representatives from the same seven Asian arts residency centres who participated in the Setouchi project were in attendance.

Not without irony: Is Asia the new cultural policy moment?

MELBOURNEFebruary 2014 -Lesley Alway


Report OverviewInternational cultural engagement is currently experiencing its own 'policy moment' both in Australia and internationally. This paper aims to examine the development of new thinking about best practice models for international cultural engagement and the response of Australian policy makers. The paper argues that the 'Asian century' is a key factor in the current focus on international cultural policy, but that this particular 'moment' presents certain challenges and paradoxes for government policy makers, funding agencies and the cultural sector if they are to implement more relevant and effective policies for cultural engagement with Asia. It concludes that, somewhat ironically, the emergent paradigm requires a re-evaluation and inversion of some of the assumptions and concepts derived from business and 'new public management' that underpinned many of the initiatives of the first 'cultural policy moment' of the mid-nineties.Full Text [PDF]

SYDNEY AND MELBOURNE 2-10 October, 2013 - With the support of the Australia Council for the Arts International Visitors Program, Asialink Arts hosted Shanghai based independent curator Zoe Zhang Bing in Sydney and Melbourne.

Bing began her career with the rise of Chinese contemporary art in the late 1990s, working at the ShanghART Gallery. In 2006, she became Deputy Director of the Shanghai Duolun Museum of Modern Art. Her many years of work with the United Nations Development Programme won her recognition in 2005 as one of Marie Claire's 30 Most Influential Women. In 2011, she curated an exhibition of new Chinese contemporary video art at the Rennes Video Art Festival in France, titled Cold Fairyland. In 2012, Zoe Zhang Bing worked as one of ten curators of the Kuandu Biennale in Taipei and participated in the 1st World Biennial Forum in Gwangju, South Korea.

While in Australia, Zoe Zhang Bing undertook a research visit to Sydney and Melbourne visiting arts institutions, galleries and artists. On 3 October a 'curatorial masterclass' was hosted by Bing where she presented recent curatorial projects and discussed the current state of art in China with students and guests at COFA.

In Melbourne on 8 October an industry round table was held at Asialink where Bing presented her thoughts on the current state of contemporary art in China. This was followed by a discussion with Australia based arts professionals on current strategies being employed in curatorial practice, arts education and contemporary exhibition projects across Asia.

This project was assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body.

COFA, Australian Council of the Arts

Ishu Han 'Study Country'

MELBOURNE 9 October - 17 October 2013. Student Gallery, Victorian College of the Arts (VCA). ¿Born in Shanghai, China, Ishu Han now lives and works in Tokyo, Japan. During his 12 week residency at the Victorian College of the Arts, Han has examined Chinese immigration to Australia, the discovery of gold in Victoria during the 1850s and the legacy of these histories.

Drawing from this research and an experience of place, this exhibition investigates notions of 'identity' in contemporary art.

The exchange residency is a collaboration between Tokyo Wonder Site, Asialink Arts¿ and the VCA.

Ishuhan logos

Amy Lee Sanford | Break Pot Performance, Swanston Street","sans-serif";">

MELBOURNE 24 September 2013. Amy Lee Sanford is a Cambodian-American visual artist. Her work explores the evolution of emotional stagnation, and the lasting psychological effects of war, including aspects of guilt, loss, alienation and displacement. She was born in Cambodia in 1972, and raised in the United States: in July 1974, nine months before the Khmer Rouge took full control of the country; Amy's father arranged her safe passage out of Cambodia, amid rocket launches and raids.

Break Pot Performance is part of an ongoing series of performances in which the artist works with clay earthenware from Kompong Chhnang, her father's home province. After solemnly breaking a single pot, Amy will gather and glue the pieces back together. The simple process is mesmerizingly methodical and surprisingly meditative.

Her work has been exhibited internationally, and she holds qualifications in art, science and engineering from Brown, Harvard, and Massachusetts Universities and the Rhode Island School of Design.

Asialink Arts hosted Sanford on September 24 to perform Break Pot: Swanston St.

For more information, or to contact the artist, please visit","sans-serif";">","sans-serif";">

Residency Research and Res Artis 2012

Japan, October 2012- Asialink Arts Residencies Manager, Eliza Roberts was awarded an Australia-Japan Foundation research grant to meet with current and potential new residency host organisations throughout Japan. Eliza's research took her to Kyoto, Naoshima, Nara, Osaka, Nagoya, Tokyo and Echigo-Tsumari. Eliza participated in the Res Artis General Meeting held at Tokyo Wonder Site, and also took part in a Roundtable discussion on the concept of 'Microresidencies' at Youkobo Art Space.

Have a look at photos from Res Artis


The Bookwallah completes its journey

INDIA 21 November 2012 - After 22 days and 2000 kms by train the Bookwallah has finished its journey across India from Mumbai to Poidicherry via Goa, Bangalore and Chennai.  Having stopped to discuss their new books, met writers, dined with Indian artists in their homes, conversed with key thinkers and visited some of India's most thought-provoking places, the ingenious library has been packed for the final time.

A part of Ozfest, the Bookwallah captivated local audiences and drew wide ranging media attention as this team of Australian and Indian writers travelled in search of stories, conversations and connections.

In the media:

Only books, no baggage, Anjana Vaswani, News, Mid Day (Mumbai edition), 4 November 2012.

Hit the road with this Bookwallah, Lifestyle, Mid Day (Mumbai edition), 3 November 2012.

Writers' pit-stop, Keerthi Basavarajaiah, Lounge, Bangalore Mirror, 1 November 2012.

Six Writers in 2,000-km roving lit fest rail journey,, 19 October 2012.

The Bookwallah: A unique train journey for Australian and Indian authors, The Siasat Daily, 31 October 2012.

Check out photos from the Bookwallah's travels

Utopia@Asialink at Res Artis

Tokyo 26-28 October 2012 - Utopia Director, Natalie King, was invited to participate in a roundtable discussion on "Pan-continental collaboration" in Tokyo at the Worldwide Network of Artist Residencies / Res Artis General Meeting 2012, 26-28 October 2012. The session focused on new regional methodologies and intra-continental dialogue.

Participants: Hedwig Fijen (Director, Manifesta Foundation, The Netherlands); Natalie King (Director, Utopia@Asialink, Australia); Sunjung Kim (Professor at the Korea National University of Arts/ Artistic Director, Samuso/ Co-Artistic Director, Gwangju Biennale 2012, South Korea);¿Tan Boon Hui (Director, Singapore Art Museum, Singapore); Kadija de Paula (Residencias en Red, Brazil). Moderator: Yusaku Imamura (Director, Tokyo Wonder Site/ Counsellor on Special Issues to the Governor, Tokyo Metropolitan Government).

Images from Res Artis

Asialink Arts and the Asia Century White Paper

Following the release of the Asian Century White Paper, Asialink Arts was delighted that the Government recognised the importance of cultural links as a key component and contributor to developing capabilities and connections with Asia. As Asialink Arts Director, Lesley Alway stated, 'underpinning these initiatives to build stronger connections and partnerships across the region, there is a need to build Australia's Asia capabilities- and this applies as much to the cultural sector as any other sector of society and the economy.'

Likewise, the White Paper includes the opportunity for a more detailed policy response for the cultural sector through the Government's consideration of the Review of the Australia Council and the commitment to the 'revamp' of the Australia International Cultural Council.  These reviews provide the opportunity for Australia to be at the forefront of global best practice in international cultural engagement.

The White Paper provides a roadmap for the cultural sector to navigate the Asia Century and equip our artists, producers, curators, arts managers, organisation and institutions to both contribute and learn from the opportunities emerging in the region.  As the paper also notes, these challenges will require further community conversation.

Lesley Alway in the Media:

Art an important pathway to Asian engagement, Ben Eltham, Crikey, 2 November 2012.

Culturally diverse art: not black and white, Leo Ribeiro, Arts Hub, 1 November 2012.

Utopia in the Media

Melbourne, October 2012- In partnership with the Ian Potter Museum Utopia@Asialink presented two exhibitions, Jitish Kallat:Circa and Gigi Scaria: Prisms of Perception as part of the  2012 Melbourne Festival.  The first time both these internationally acclaimed artists have shown in Australia, Scaria's work examined India's rapid urbanization, while through multiple interventions across the Ian Potter Museum of Art, Kallat constructed a sculptural conversation within the museum in order to explore notions of duration and restoration.

Listen to audio from the Lemuria Forum and follow along with the artists' powerpoint slides

Steaming ahead but still battling not to fall behind, Robert Nelson, The Age, 31 October 2012.

Gigi Scaria and Chaitanya Sambrani, Weekend Arts, Radio National, 27 October 2012.

Gigi Scaria – A multitalented artist, Hindi, SBS Radio, 24 October 2012.

Asian art enters a new frontier, Newsline, Australia Network News, 8 November 2012.


Jitish Kallat, 'Circa', 2011,© Courtesy Jitish Kallat Studio, Photo: Viki Petherbridge, courtesy the Ian Potter Museum of Art

Searching for Lemuria India 2012 and Beyond

One of our 2012 priorities has been to promote creative exchanges between India and Australia during the DFAT focus year on India. We are pleased to profile these projects.  Since 2011 we have partnered with the Australia India Institute and other cultural institutions at the University of Melbourne to build a long term engagement strategy between the arts and cultural sectors of Australia and India. Working this way has proven to be a rewarding experience for Asialink Arts as the depth and diversity of the partnerships has produced such a rich group of collaborative programs.

The Bookwallah

India31 October - 21 November 2012 -The Bookwallah

takes six writers and an ingenious travelling library across India by train. Three Indian and three Australian writers journey through the cities and towns of modern India in search of stories, conversations and connections. Poet Sudeep Sen, novelist and critic Chandrahas Choudhury, and journalist and fiction writer Annie Zaidi join novelist Michelle De Kretser, young adult author Kirsty Murray, and non-fiction writer Benjamin Law.  The tour begins at the Mumbai LitFest, pauses in Goa at Literati bookshop, joins forces with the Bangalore Literature Festival, heads west to Chennai, then finishes more than 2000 km away on the coast in Pondicherry. Along the way they'll be stopping to discuss their new books and meet readers. They'll also dine with Indian writers in their homes, converse with key thinkers and visit some of India's most thought-provoking places.

Gigi Scaria discusses Prism of Perception

MELBOURNE, 15 October 2012 - Asialink Arts talks with Gigi Scaria and takes a look at his exhibition 'Prisms of Perception' at the Ian Potter Museum of Art.  A precursor to his 2013 solo exhibition, The Ian Potter Museum of Art presents a selection of Scaria's recent videos for the 2012 Melbourne Festival, providing audiences with the opportunity to experience his work for the first time in this city.  'Prisms of Perception' Circa' is presented in partnership with Utopia@Asialink in association with The Melbourne Festival.

Jitish Kallat discusses Circa

MELBOURNE, October 15 2012 - Asialink Arts speaks to Jitish Kallat about his first solo exhibition in Australia, 'Jitish Kallat: Circa' at the Ian Potter Museum of Art.  Following the reflective nature of his recent projects, this exhibition is conceived as an evolving narrative; an experiment of multiple interventions across several spaces within the Ian Potter Museum of Art.  Throughout the exhibition, from October 2012 to April 2013, some works will appear for few days, while others will remain on display throughout.  Still others await conception when the departure of interventions makes space for them as part of an evolving entry and exit of ideas.  'Jitish Kallat: Circa' is presented in partnership with Utopia@Asialink in association with The Melbourne Festival.

Performance Lecture with Asialink Roving Resident Nikhil Chopra

MELBOURNE, 9 October 2012 - Internationally renowned interdisciplinary artist Nikhil Chopra (Goa) captivated his guests at VCA, where he explained his practice by way of a Performance Lecture that weaved in and out of character. In the hour-long event, Nikhil transformed himself into a fictitious  'futuristic Elizabethan' character, and showed a slideshow of photographs that document his interdisciplinary performances in Italy, Berlin, India and Australia. Nikhil Chopra is the inaugural recipient of the Asialink Roving Residency, and will 'rove' between Carriageworks, Sydney; Asialink, Melbourne; and the Fremantle Arts Centre, WA.

Djon Mundine introduces Shadowlife

TAIPEI:August 2012

- Asialink's latest touring exhibition -Shadowlife- in Asia features nine internationally renowned contemporary indigenous Australian artists choreographing their stories through photography and other new media. The artists give contemporary meaning to age old spiritual practices, seeking a kind of personal truth and challenge against rooted perception of race, culture and creed.

Video produced by Bureau of Cultural Affairs, Kaohsiung City Government.

Arts Residency Briefing session - Melbourne

9 August 2012 - More than 70 attended a briefing session in Melbourne tonight to learn more about Asialink's popular arts residency program. Asialink Arts Residencies manager Eliza Roberts was joined by Bianca Looney and Lucas Chirnside (2011 visual arts residents to Japan) and Tom Cho (2011 writing resident to Japan).

Kosuke Ikeda's Open Studio

20 July 2012For the first time, Asialink has partnered with

RMIT's International Artist in Residence programto continue their annual reciprocal residency withTokyo Wonder Site

, Japan.Kosuke Ikedabegan his three-month residency at RMIT, Melbourne on 14 May, while Tasmanian visual artist

Alicia Kingheaded to Japan on 8 May to start her residency in Tokyo.

TitledToward the New Vision of Energy and Ecology after 3.11

, Ikeda has collaborated with artists and engineers to realise a 'Melbourne Art-Power Plant' that explores alternate micro power generation. Ikeda's project, open now, can be seen until 16 August in RMIT'sProject Space / Spare Room Gallery.

This is the fourth Asialink reciprocal exchange between Australia and Japan, and forms part ofAsialink's annual Reciprocal Residency program


The Roots of Thai Art

  29 May 2012 - Asialink and the Gordon Darling Foundation have launched The Roots of Thai Art by Dr Piriya Krairiksh, a comprehensive survey of the origins and history of Thai Art to the 12th century. Sid Myer AM, Chairman, Asialink was in attendance, along with Simon Wallace, Honorary Consul-General for Thailand.

As Australia tries to engage more with the Asian region through a range of cultural activities, this book will provide Australian scholars and curators with a deeper understanding of the art of the region. The project will strengthen already existing links between Asian Art curators and Australian cultural institutions with their counterparts in Thailand.
The Roots of Thai Art has been translated and published in Bangkok by River Books.

Our 2012 Residents in the latest Arts newsletter

1 April 2012 See the faces of some of Australia's leading visual artists, performers, writers, dancers, choreographers and arts managers and read about the spaces they will engage and explore with in Asia through 2012. Also catch up on the latest news and get a sneak peek of what's in store.


In 2012, as we enter the second decade of the "Asian Century" there could be no more important moment in Australia's history to be encouraging, promoting and enabling a better understanding of Asia through cultural engagement between ourselves and Asia. Asialink Arts recently made a submission to the 'Australia in the Asian Century' white paper.

The following recommendations were made:

1. Make Asia a key priority for the new National Cultural Policy.
2. Provide Leadership and Resources for a 'new generation' model of cultural engagement with Asia.
3. Invest in the new generation 'Asia capable' cultural workforce.

Dowload the full submission [PDF, 143 kbs]

February 2012
-  Former Asialink arts resident Michael Yuen entertained a packed audience at the Yasuko Hiraoka Myer Room, with a discussion on the rise of Chinese mega-cities and their social ramifications. Michael has lived in Beijing during the city's drastic development over the past decade. As subway lines grow and the population booms - what is the impact on the individuals involved? 

View photos from the event by pressing play on the slideshow opposite.

Audio Button