Ritual Nature features a new series of evocative performative videos by South Australian artist Ray Harris, that explores the unsettling edges of physical and emotional existence in connection to ritual acts and the natural world.
Her meditative time-based actions that situate the body in dialogue with the environment, allude to death and its associations with grief and loss, decay and dirtiness, and the possibilities of cleansing and transformation. In this intimate relationship rests a delicate tension between the female body and the environment, where Harris’ seemingly passive acts of surrender to her surroundings can also be considered acts of gendered resistance.
Informed by a research-based residency investigating the mid-1960s and 1970s Australian and international Post-object and Documentation collection held at the Flinders University Museum of Art, Harris’ work is a nod to the international conceptual art movement. Presented in juxtaposition with works from the Museum’s collection, including artists Jill Orr, Mike Parr, Ken Unsworth, David Thorp, Ian Hamilton and Mary Fish, Ritual Nature also highlights the resonance of conceptual and performance art with contemporary makers today.
The Collections Project is a collaboration between Guildhouse and Flinders University Museum of Art that provides artists with the opportunity to engage with the Museum’s collections and staff to create new work for exhibition. Guildhouse is the leading South Australian organisation supporting and creatingconnections for South Australian creative practitioners.