For 150 years, Temperance Hall has served as a shelter for community. This purpose has continued with Phillip Adams BalletLab’s stewardship of the space since 2016, and the Hall is today a haven for experimentation and the exploding of our comfort and complacency.
Enter the Temperance Hall ‘Resilience Funded’ artists (new name TBA shortly!)—Rachael Wisby; Harrison Hall and Andrew Treloar; Luke George; and Ben Hurley, Emma Riches and Luke Fryer—a creative burst in the form of seven artists who’ll be utilising the Hall as an artistic laboratory and incubator for wide ranging artistic investigations in movement-based forms. Over the next six months, this group of artists will be an uncensored, curated arm of Temperance Hall, continually troubling our assumptions and nudging us in new direction. Over to you, Luke Fryer, Ben Hurley and Emma Riches for a first taste of what this group is getting up to.
Our work often looks at a blurring of lines between everyday life and the creative process. We consider our shared practice to exist beyond the studio, and we’re interested in facets that can be easily overlooked, such as a conversation at the supermarket or constructing an IKEA bookshelf together at home. During this time, we are keeping a logbook of our activities to archive the different types of productivity that provoke our work.
Across this project, marriage becomes an evolving through-line; an underlying premise informed by the COVID-19 lockdown which has physically confined us, as housemates and artistic collaborators, within our place of residence. Amidst these restrictions, our unique circumstance allows us to incorporate aspects of touch into our process; a luxury many other creatives cannot have during this time.
We are thrilled Temperance Hall has invited us to be a part of this project. We look to it as an opportunity to have open dialogue with all of the involved artists and consider what can be actioned in this time of precarity to advocate for the wider ecology of independent dance.
– Ben Hurley, Emma Riches and Luke Fryer
ABOUT BEN, EMMA AND LUKE
As equal collaborators, Benjamin, Luke and Emma’s work considers the meeting point between their individual artistic interests, close friendship, working relationship and perceived realities through processes such as improvisation, notation and intuitive response. They began working together during their time at the Victorian College of the Arts after which they moved into a share house together in Coburg, Melbourne.
Benjamin has worked with many leading Australian and international companies and artists including Arts Fission, Chunky Move, Phillip Adams BalletLab, Alice Caroline and Will, Strange Fruit, Isabelle Beauverd, Deanne Butterworth, Victoria Chiu, Shelley Lasica and Lee Serle. In 2019 he participated in the Venice Biennale’s Danza Project under the direction of Marie Chouinard performing Trisha Brown’s Set and Reset/Reset and Dance Me To the End of Love by Alessandro Sciarroni at the Venice Art Biennale. Benjamin has presented a small body of works with key collaborators Luke Fryer and Emma Riches for festivals and fundraisers including ToTo at Treloar Land and Strawberry Kisses at Strawberry Field’s Festival.
Emma has worked with Siobhan McKenna, Jo Lloyd, Phillip Adams/Matthew Bird, Shian Law, Alice Caroline Will, Adele Varcoe, Victoria Hunt and Deep Soulful Sweats, and has performed small roles with Phillip Adams BalletLab and Lucy Guerin Inc. Her choreography has been commissioned for the University of Melbourne, and presented at M1 CONTACT (Singapore), Sunshine Art Spaces, MPavilion and Strawberry Fields Music Festival. Emma has performed in Dance Massive, Next Wave Festival, FOLA, Art Galley of NSW, Immigration Museum Victoria, Melbourne International Festival and Public Art Melbourne.
Coming from a gymnastics background, Luke began his professional dance training at the Victorian College of the Arts where he graduated with the Orloff Charitable Family Trust Award for Excellence in Dance. Since graduation, Luke has choregraphed two short works on youth dancers at the QL2 Centre for Youth Dance and the Anita Coutts School of Dance, as well as performed in a variety of festival contexts including the Festival of Live Art, Dance Massive, Midsumma Festival and Melbourne Art Fair. Most recently he has performed in Shelley Lasica’s If I Don’t Understand You as part of the Melbourne Fringe Festival at Temperance Hall. Luke continues to work with choreographers, artists and collaborators such as Shelley Lasica, Emma Riches, Benjamin Hurley, Alice Will Caroline and Phoebe Robinson on their current artistic projects.
Images by Georgia Steele and Thomas Woodman.