Himomi Tango
Absence (detail installation view)
(various materials including wool, cardboard, paper, paint and plastic)
© 2008

As part of 2008 Next Wave Festival, we are fortunate to have Japanese-Australian artist Hiromi Tango in a one-month residency at Vitrine and Sample throughout May. Hiromi creates elaborate artist books from the collected memories, stories, letters and diaries that she is given during her interactive public performances.

During her time in Vitrine, Hiromi's objective is to hand-stitch collected ‘feelings and voices’ and develop a collaborative sculpture with the show title and theme of Absence. Her personal engagement with the site, situation and the community that passes will determine the final outcome of the artwork. Even after the first week, complete strangers have come to visit Hiromi, presenting her with drawings and letters, adding to the work and becoming part of an impressive and complex inhabitation. Hiromi says of her current work:

"Absence will contribute to a more critical understanding of how artist and public engagement is defined, and how the artist can intervene into a particular space, potentially generating unexpected moments of intimacy and tension. How much of the exchange is me and how much of it is you? Is it possible to understand each other? The closer I get to you, the more I feel anxious, uneasy and… absent."