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Please note: the conference is in BUILDING 2 on the UC Bruce campus. 
Watch this space for information updates. 

DAILY FORECAST (care of Describing Things in Canberra):  

Wednesday Canberra weather: regardless of any thing Neil Finn may have said, you don’t really have your own personal weather bubble. You can easily test this by travelling from the Woden Valley to the northside on foggy morning. Or getting on a plane in December and flying to Helsinki.

So those of you who are in Canberra today will probably experience much the same weather as each other. Warm to hot and slighty sticky. The weather equivalent of spilling cocoa on your new trousers.

Chemical interventions such as deodorant, sunscreen, mosquito repellent and anti-histamines are strongly indicated. Consider long before you commit to opaque tights, however hairy your legs are. Once the sun is over the yard arm, applications of gin and tonic may be beneficial.



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Wednesday, November 30 • 8:30am - 2:00pm

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Caren Florance (& Angela Gardner) 
Working Papers (jostles)
Exhibiting space: Building 2, Lower level A Foyer

These are large-scale reproductions of small process moments of Working Papers, an artists' book collaboration with poet/printmaker Angela Gardner. We are exploring the sense and nonsense of composition, the immersive space of creativity. She works with her own poetry, casting and gleaning, and I work with hand-set letterpress, re-arranging her words to make new strange castings. The small moments of play, experimentation and process are caught, copied, and thrown up and out to allow quick or slow contemplation. 

Laser-printed tyvek, 6 pieces, 841 x 1189mm ea. 

Jen Webb (poems), Paul Hetherington (poems), Andrew Melrose (music)
‘he sat weeping on the shore’: remembering those who mourn  (The Odyssey 5.82)
Exhibiting space: Room 2B2

In 2001, the Norwegian container vessel MV Tampa responded to a mayday call that led to the recovery of refugees, mostly Hazaras, seeking refuge in Australia. A period of international tension followed, with Captain Arne Rinnan insisting on landing the refugees on Australian soil, and the Australian government denying the request. This event is only one instance in a history of similar events; a history that is ongoing, with no let up in sight of the flows of desperate people. The objects in the installation seek to concretise the fragility of those seeking refuge; the poetry and other textual and sonic materials will attempt to re-imagine this event, and remember things that are forgotten in official representations of the global refugee crisis.

Mixed media: ship model, Preiser figures, eggshells, folded paper: 3D installation with sonic element, and handmade poetry collection for distribution 

Lorraine Webb and Jen Webb 
Letter and Line
Exhibiting space:  Upper level, 2B7, space outside room. 

These works are part of a larger collaboration between two sisters, one a painter and the other a poet. We are trying to find ways to work together within and across our forms: ways that are neither illustration nor ekphrasis. How does colour speak to word? What is the relationship between a line of poetry and a line of paint? Our first approach to this project is to break with some formal constraints: painting not on canvas but on odd-shaped objects; writing not lineated lyric poetry but prose poetry and fragments. Next is the openness that is a mark of most creative collaborations, a moving to and fro between images, ideas, conversations, essays into objects. We are concerned more with gestures than with the mark or the gaze, and with determining how, through the movement of eye and hand and conversation, we might make letter that speaks to line, line to letter. 

Mixed media; painting on timber shapes, handmade or altered string/s, poems. 4 pieces, variable size and shape; 420mm wide x 1080 long; 1430mm wide x c.1340mm; 1725mm long x 240mm (diagonal); 40mm wide x 820mm long; with 2 – 4 poems, A5-sized. 

avatar for Caren Florance

Caren Florance

HDR student, University of Canberra
Caren Florance is a research student and sessional design tutor in the Faculty of Arts & Design at the University of Canberra, Australia. She often works under the imprint Ampersand Duck, and is an artist whose work focuses on the book and the printed word, using traditional letterpress and bookbinding processes along with more contemporary technologies. She also teaches at the ANU School of Art and is collected by national and... Read More →

Paul Hetherington

Professor of Writing, University of Canberra
Paul Hetherington is Professor of Writing at the University of Canberra and Head of the International Poetry Studies Institute (IPSI) there. He has published ten full-length collections of poetry, including Burnt Umber (UWAP, 2016) and five poetry chapbooks, most recently Earth. His collection, Six Different Windows won the 2014 Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards (poetry) and he was a finalist in the 2014 international Aesthetica... Read More →
avatar for Andrew Melrose

Andrew Melrose

Professor of Writing, University of Winchester
Andrew Melrose is Professor of Writing for Children and Creative Writing at the University of Winchester, UK. He has over 160 film, fiction, nonfiction, research, songs, poems and other writing credits, including 15 films, 4 scholarly and 30 creative books. He is also the editor of the journal Write4Children and has written a number of books, articles and book chapters on various aspects of critical and creative writing and on child-centered... Read More →
avatar for Jen Webb

Jen Webb

Distinguished Professor of Creative Practice, University of Canberra
Jen Webb is Distinguished Professor of Creative Practice at the University of Canberra, and Director of the Centre for Creative and Cultural Research. Her work includes scholarly volumes Researching Creative Writing (Frontinus, 2015) and Art and Human Rights: Contemporary Asian Contexts (with Caroline Turner; Manchester UP, 2016), and poetry volumes Watching the World (with Paul Hetherington; Blemish Books, 2015) and Stolen Stories, Borrowed... Read More →

Wednesday November 30, 2016 8:30am - 2:00pm
Around Building 2

Attendees (5)