Welcome to our blog site for Against The Tide, an innovative and immersive public art project in development with Think+DO Tank.
The project aims to take participants on a journey west along the waterway between Circular Quay and Parramatta by Ferry. Using a special geo-locative mobile app, participants will be invited to access the multiple layered histories of this significant river highway.
So, why are we interested taking to this waterway? What is found from looking west and traveling upriver?
The Parramatta River has always been central to Aboriginal and colonial life in Sydney. The waterways where Sydney now exists were a sacred place where ceremonies, connected to the seasons, would bring Aboriginal clans together from the Hunter, Georges, and Parramatta Rivers to meet and trade with each other. After colonization, it was the first highway of the Sydney region and a passageway for escape and new beginnings.
Against The Tide is interested in the act of taking to these waters and offering a new way of seeing. What is hidden and what is revealed by this journey west up the River? What has happened here? The project traces lines and layers of contested history and presents the contradictory nature of Sydney captured through the prism of its waterways.
We’re not just interested in history, but the way history is made: through the ellipses and forgotten threads; the contested narratives; the very personal stories of intimacy, creaion, birth and burial, growth and demise; and the grander political, colonial and cultural dreams. Against The Tide will lead participants into a poetic and dramatic event, not a straight re-telling of history.
The app, along with the physical journey of the ferry, delivers participants to an experience with the waterway in provocative and innovative ways, in situ. It traces lines of contested history through time and place. It brings disparate and unexpected threads of the past and present into conversation. It allows a new view of the glistening and often distracting screens of the present.
Have we got your attention yet? Want to know more?
You can read more about the project on our about page. Follow our blog and we’ll keep you posted on our journey to produce this unique and interactive new art project!