Issue
#24

Editorial: Islands

Whether exotic or dangerous, romantic or political, islands conjure up diverse associations. They can be a place of refuge or a site of disorder and chaos. An island is in many ways its own world, a status that inevitably piques the interest of the adventurous.

It is perhaps the literary imagination that has been most in thrall of the island. Early examples include Homer’s depiction of Odysseus’ ten-year journey home to Ithaca via various island sites of both magic and terror. Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels sends the protagonist on a series of journeys to various imaginary islands where he meets and interacts with curious societies that confound and enlighten him. Thomas More’s Utopia depicts a community that inhabits an isthmus which they physically detach from the mainland in order to form a progressive island society.…read more

Inside Issue #24

No man is an island


Kate Britton

What is the darkness in our national character that means we do not extend good faith and protection to those that seek asylum in Australia? Alex Seton’s 2014 Adelaide Biennial work Someone died trying to have a life like mine asks this question, probing our island minds.

Demolition of a Wall


David Greenhalgh

An investigation into the historical forces that divided cinema and the gallery, and a glimpse of a future reconciliation.

Three Months on the Island (the significance of popcorn)


Alanna Lorenzon

Part travel journal, part art review, this article reflects on preconceived ideas of Iceland and how they were transformed during a stay at the SÍM artist residency in Reykjavik.

The Armchair Traveller: Cartographic performance and projective travel narratives


Deb Mansfield Isobel Parker Philip

A meandering essay that navigates the metaphoric resonances of Deb Mansfield’s 2013 series The Armchair Traveller through cartographic gestures and speculative travelogues.

Rising Rights, Unbound Islands, and Contingent Movements


Laura McLean

At the Contingent Movements Symposium, the dissolution of the circumscribed island object comes to represent a more general planetary unbinding.

Dreaming of Fata Morgana


Megan Robson

Dreaming of Fata Morgana (2013) is a series of photographs by Sydney-based artist Tanya Dyhin that draws on the representation of the island as an illusionary place to explore ideas of perception and experience.

To be the one who leaves


Greer Rochford

The act of leaving propels one into unknown territory with a vision of the present as nothing more than constantly becoming the past – a past charged with the time of now, Jetzeit.

The Floating Studio


Laura Skerlj

This article draws a connection between the metaphorical island and the expanded contemporary artist’s studio.


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This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.

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