PRESENTER
Sydney Opera House

PARTNERS
Art Museum and Library, Ota (Japan)
Spiral (Wacoal Art Centre), Tokyo
Sydney Festival
Australia-Japan Foundation
The Japan Foundation, Sydney

DIRECTOR
Frank Newman

CREATIVE PRODUCER
Kathryn Hunyor

ARTISTS
Nobumasa Takahashi
Yuriko Suzuki
Jacqui Stockdale
Alison Bennett
Toby K

MEDIA HIGHLIGHTS
Audrey Journal
NZ Herald
Little Day Out
Time Out Sydney

CREDITS
Photography: Anna Kucera, courtesy Sydney Opera House

NUMBERS
Sydney & Ōta: 2500+ (sold out)
Over 5 days of the Sydney Festival

DATES
16 – 21 January 2018

CONCEPT
Join the Dots is a cross-cultural art exchange project that brings children, visual artists and performers in Japan and Australia together. The project shows us the power of creative play to create meaningful exchanges that transcend language and culture – we may not speak each other’s language, or be in the same country, but we can collaborate, communicate and create art.

Join the Dots is a 21st century contemporary art project that is intercultural and driven by technology, but has at its core the traditional practices of illustration and theatre-play from the cultures of Australia and Japan.

THE ARTISTS
Inspired by manga and traditional Japanese iconography, acclaimed artist Nobumasa Takahashi’s practice spans fine art and performative live-illustration events. A quick-draw specialist, he’s also a highly entertaining artist to watch.

Award-winning Australian artist Jacqui Stockdale has exhibited internationally since 2007. She is known for her humorous, magical and symbolic images that span theatrical portrait photography, painting, drawing & collage.

Yuriko Suzuki is a contemporary dancer trained in classical ballet and experimental dance in Japan and Austria, whose work explores the connection between body and mind in choreography and dance.

Funny woman Alison Bennett is Artistic Director of Hurrah Hurrah which creates highly physical works of collaborative theatre. She trained at Jacques Lecoq International School of Theatre in Paris and teaches at NIDA.

THE PROJECT
Join the Dots involves a visual artist using simple digital drawing technology to illustrate on the walls. A performer then prompts the children to interact with the work, and together they playfully respond to the drawings. Breaking down the usual hierarchies, the experience is a ‘three-way play’, between the artists, performers and children.

Children and artists in both countries were connected via live video link, to turn the walls of the Sydney Opera House and the Art Museum and Library, Ōta, into one giant projected canvas for drawing, making friends and having fun.

The results were beautiful, colourful, transient artworks filled with texture, humour and many cheeky surprises. Friendships were formed and promises made to ‘see you next time!’.

OUR APPROACH
ArtsPeople collaborated with the Sydney Opera House on the conception, creative development and production of Join the Dots. We also secured a Japanese presenting partner, funding supporters and managed key stakeholder relationships.

Our role included bilingual delivery of:
Curatorial & Creative Production
Partnership Brokering
Stakeholder & Relationship Management
Strategic & Cultural Advice
Artist Liaison
Creative Development

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