Homing Instinct is a collaborative international programme of artist commissions related to home, shelter, and belonging. Three new moving image works have been commissioned from Kahurangiariki Smith (Aotearoa), Ari Tampubolon (Australia), and Ananta Thitanat (Thailand).
Homing Instinct is a film project developed in partnership between CIRCUIT, Composite (Naarm), Storage Art Space (Bangkok), and The Physics Room (Ōtautahi), with each organisation taking responsibility for a new commission developed in their local context. The new works will be joined by Aotearoa-based artist Dieneke Jansen’s This Housing Thing (2021), a work and practice which sparked this series of new commissions.
Homing Instinct is a response to living in a time that requires not only redress of housing inequalities, but more expansive conceptions of housing-shelter-belonging. As increasing numbers of people are displaced through social and environmental forces, the exchange of stories around housing and home is both politically and personally necessary. As a whole, the project intends to foreground empathetic, courageous works about what home and belonging means in our respective contexts, and to assert the role of embodied, spiritual and psychological experience within any discussion of housing.
The three new commissions were selected following an open call by a curatorial panel comprised of Mary Pansanga, Sathit Sattarasart, Channon Goodwin, Mark Williams, and Abby Cunnane. The public launch will take place at The Physics Room in Ōtautahi Christchurch, Aotearoa New Zealand, in 2024, followed by screenings at Composite, Naarm Melbourne; Storage Art Space, Bangkok; and Enjoy Contemporary Art Space, Te Whanganui-a-Tara. The programme will subsequently be available to tour.
About the artists:
He uri nō ngā tūpuna i heke mai ai i runga i ngā waka o Te Arawa, o Tainui, o Mataatua, o Takitimu, o Horouta hoki, Kahurangiariki Smith is a Māori artist living in Aotearoa New Zealand. In recent years Kahurangiariki has been collaborating with her māmā, Dr Aroha Yates-Smith, a leading academic on the ancient Māori feminine. Kahurangiariki’s work explores her mother’s research and the many personifications of atua wāhine (Māori goddesses). She works to manifest these atua wāhine into a physical form, locating them in the present and in our futures. Sometimes playful, sometimes cheeky, Kahurangiariki’s work explores a range of media such as moving image, karaoke, 3D rendering, video games, neon and writing.
Ari Tampubolon is an artist based in Naarm (Melbourne). Ari's work considers the liminal zones she inhabits in transitioning and in diaspora as time-less sites of release. Through her practice, Ari manipulates genre conventions of art, film, and theatre, to explore the notion of healing as existing solely on 'island time'. Ari's practice is a restorative process, a survival instinct in response to structural oppression. Ari's research work tracks the legacy of Western cultural neo-imperialism and aims to archive such impact through her artistic practice documented in a conscious framing of the body as cinematic medium. Ari's practice has spanned across moving image, performance, installation, and writing, and she utilises research methods from the Institutional Critique movement in art to synthesise the cultural trauma held in the body in relation to tangible structures of power. Ari has exhibited recent works with Immigration Museum, The Substation, and Gertrude Contemporary, and Seventh Gallery. In 2021, Ari was one of the inaugural recipients of Multicultural Arts Victoria (MAV)’s Diasporas Commissions. Ari is currently in production for How do I let you die?, a short film developed in part by the commission, premiering at Arts House as part of a hybrid theatre work of the same title written by Michele Lee.
Ananta Thitanat is a self-taught filmmaker and photographer with over 12 years of experience in documentary making. Ananta was born in Bangkok, Thailand and raised by a worker at Siam cinema. Ananta has participated in international forums and workshops including Docs By The Sea in Indonesia, and Yamagata Documentary Dojo in Japan. She gained recognition for her debut feature documentary, Scala, which was selected for multiple international film festivals and received critical acclaim. Scala premiered at the 72nd Berlin Film Festival's Forum section, and went on to screen at international film festivals including the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, World Film Festival of Bangkok, and Hot Docs. The film was praised for its touching tribute to a disappearing way of life, its visually stunning cinematography, and its powerful storytelling, and won the EIDF Youth Eye Award at the EBS International Documentary Festival, the Grand Jury Prize at the 2022 World Film Festival of Bangkok, honorable mention winner in the Best Mid-Length Documentary category at the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival and Thailand National Film Association Awards 2022 for best documentary feature.