The Reckoning is a decolonisation project that aims to generate a First Nation’s performance methodology, that addresses the intergenerational trauma of Australia’s colonial past and the collective amnesia surrounding this. It will explore this by facilitating reflective engagement and healing through a First Nations paradigm and performance pedagogy. First Nations ways of being and knowing have been critical sites of resistance in the process of decolonisation, and a First Nations paradigm privileges embodied knowledge and aims to achieve right relationships with both human and non-human forms. The performance methodology will connect mind, body and spirit and ways of learning as both a collective experience and thus become an act of decolonisation as it seeks to both explore and honour First Nations ways of being and doing.
To investigate the Reckoning methodology Three First Nations artists will explore and develop the Reckoning performance process and the First Nations protocols surrounding this, while taking inspiration from Butoh which developed in response to the trauma of the bombing of Hiroshima. The Reckoning process will involve the First Nations performer reckoning both with themselves and with geographical sites of significance to First Nations people. The process of reckoning with oneself is based on the premise that intergenerational trauma is stored within the bodies DNA and can be accessed through embodied perception techniques. While the process of reckoning with a geographical site of significance is based on the premise that acknowledging the true significance of a site requires looking beyond its symbolic representations.
ABOUT THE CREATIVE TEAM
Joshua Pether is of Kalkadoon heritage and lives and works on Noongar country WA. He is an experimental performance artist and choreographer of movement, temporary ritual and imagined realities. His practice is influenced by his two cultural histories – Indigeneity and disability and how the two intersect and meet each other. As an independent artist he has performed both nationally and internationally with a career highlight of performing at PS122 in New York.
Helah Milroy is a Palyku woman (East Pilbara), living in the Fremantle region of Western Australia. Her artwork/performance utilises Feminist and First Nations methodologies and epistemologies to explore an interest in existential philosophy and theology. In particular, the relationship between human and non-human worlds.
Janine Oxenham is a Malgana Yamatji woman from the Shark Bay area in WA. She has studied dance at both NAISDA college, NSW and WAAPA, WA. She has choreographed and performed as a freelance contemporary Indigenous dancer for numerous festivals including recent work for Houtman 400 Bullay – Open your Eyes Festival Geraldton 2019 and the SharkBay Rendezvous Festival 2018. In 2015 she mounted the work, Willy Willy, as part of the Carnarvon Future Landings project. She has facilitated community dance groups and performed as part of the core crew for Gascoyne In May for the past 9 years. In 2020 Janine worked as Movement Director for the Yirra Yaakin (YY) and Perth Festival production of Hecate and has worked on several other projects with Yirra Yaakin since including The Solidarity Project Series, Ngala Ka Daa and more recently (2021) the emerging producer program with YY, Performing Lines and Circuitwest. Recently, Janine performed in YY 2021 Perth Festival production of The Sum of Us.