Serena Chalker

Community Arts & Cultural Development

Artist Residency at The School, Belgium

I have been selected for artist residency The School (Hasselt, Belgium) an interdisciplinary residency exploring how the arts can collaborate with city institutions to create a better, happier city.

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I have been invited to the inaugural artist residency program The School in Hasselt, Belgium. Selected from 50 applicants worldwide through a competitive open call process, I will spend 4 months in residence working from January 4-May 13.

The School is a new post-academic residency where artists and designers work together on a common challenge: how we can, together with the neighbourhood, shape a more liveable city. This innovative project brings together a diverse array of 16 selected international artists, musicians, and designers, with a team of “coaches” and leaders to develop new approaches to “re-thinking the city”.

I am the only Australian artist and the only dance/choreographic artist selected. This intensive residency encompasses creative research, urban intervention and an educational platform.

I will also present a free public Q&A in partnership with Ausdance WA in Perth in June 2018. I will share how these findings might help shape Perth’s identity beyond the mining boom.

The interdisciplinary environment offers skills exchange, critical dialogue and growth, challenging artistic assumptions and developing my artistic practice in this immersive setting. The intensive, rigorous 5 month residency will create opportunities to expand my artistic practice, exploring city-making as a central tenant of my investigations. My investigations will use the collective knowledge of mentors, provocateurs and artists to address how we interact & use public space as citizens, and how to expand the possibilities of activating/engaging people.

Participating in previous international residencies has allowed me to begin new projects for international presentation, encouraging career longevity and growth. Presenting new work at the end of each month will allow me to access new international markets for my work.

I will be assigned to one of concurrent two research groups, presenting work monthly at 5 festivals which culminate in a 4 day showcase in May with performances and public lectures. In July 2018, I will present a free public presentation which engages in wider critical dialogue in Perth, in partnership with Ausdance WA and the City of Perth at King St Arts Centre, exploring how the arts can help shape Perth’s identity beyond the mining boom, connecting international ideas to the local context.

By supporting this residency you will enable me to undertake this significant international opportunity, looking at the importance of the arts as a function of city-making. This is a topic that has been a driving factor in the growth of my career thus far, and will provide valuable international perspectives on how we can drive livability through creative engagement. These funds will support my living and production costs while overseas so I can take advantage of the opportunities available.

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Serena Chalker is a critically acclaimed independent artist and co-director of Anything Is Valid Dance Theatre. Named “Most Interesting Australian Artist” in the 2016 Dance Australia Critics Survey, she holds an M.A: The Body in Performance with Distinction from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in London. Serena works in improvisation, text and site-based dance practice, questioning and re-defining the relationship between site, performance and audience.

Serena’s works have been performed and presented in Europe and Australia, including at Crack Theatre Festival (AU), Sydney Fringe (AU, Critics Pick 2017), Moving Bodies (BG), Month of Research, Uferstudios (DE), Water Tower Art Fest (BG), Noted Festival (AU), Sofia Underground Festival (BG), Saaren Kartano (FI), Barker Teatteri (FI); Festival Alternativnog Kazališnog Izričaja (HR), Process – Space Art Festival (BG), YouAreHere Festival (AU), In Short – In Situ (AU), PSi #21 Performing Mobilities Symposium (AU), Fringe World Perth (AU, Best Dance Award 2015, Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts (AU), and Springhouse (DE) amongst others.

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Alexis Diamond

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Ausdance WA

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Katherine Harper

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Isabella Stone

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Jarrad Seng

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Ash Berry

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Aimee Smith

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Marie-Louise Harvey

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Australian Dance Party

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K Black & J Cook

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