The Bureau of Meteorology La Trobe St. Weather Station, near to the Carlton Gardens, has always intrigued me. A triangular wedge of fenced-off green, on the city’s fringe, it looks like an art installation or a performance space. With a tiny garden shed, and unfamiliar equipment to measure climatic changes and patterns neatly dotted and connected by pathways, it is not so unlike the world Chunky Move’s Anouk van Dijk and Singaporean artist and filmmaker, Ho Tzu Nyen, have set up for their collaborative work, “Anti-Gravity.”
Arthur Janov, the recently deceased nonagenarian psychologist who developed primal scream therapy, would, no doubt, have felt right at home experiencing “Attractor,” a ritualistic, twerky-jerky rave directed and choreographed by Lucy Guerin and Gideon Obarzanek. Oh, and the unhinged neo-apocalyptic score, performed live by Indonesian duo, Senyawa (vocalist Rully Shabara and Wukir Suryadi on electrified “Bamboo Spear” and other instruments), was itself a gut-punching primal scream of, well, Mozartean proportions.
Myele Manzanza makes sound. Terrific sound. He plays drums. He plays the floor like it, too, were an instrument. Every surface, by this extension, has the possibility of being an instrument. And Manzanza also tap, tap, taps sound on Elle Evangelista, beginning with her shoulders. Standing face-to-face, he transmits sound to Evangelista. You can hear sound, yes. But you can also feel it as vibrations within the body.
With a Dancing Faun at the head and Farnese Hercules at the feet, I know I am in the right place. In the foyer of the NGV, the gods and heroes of Greek and Roman mythology are draped across a 14-metre long Eternity Buddha. Greco-Roman, Renaissance and Neoclassical sculpture meets the High Tang Dynasty (705–781 CE); West meets East. An interflow of all the big things: life, death, nirvana. Right place, like I said.