It's an eerie case of exquisite timing for the Dancing with the Dead exhibit at The Lock-Up.
The show features 10 works, each by a different artist, with its own relevant spin on death. Curator Grace Partridge has assembled bold works that speak strongly, each in its own way.
While the show was long in the planning, it is fortunate the creative space was able to re-open in June in the middle of a global pandemic. Considering our world is surrounded by a hyper dose of news and discussion about death, social equality and justice at the moment, the show offers an opportunity to process our own thoughts about those issues, thanks to the penetrating installations and artworks involved.
Curator Grace Partridge has assembled bold works that speak strongly, each in its own way.
The catalogue essay for the show, written by Partridge and Emma-Kate Wilson, says it succinctly: "each artist presents a vision that underpins the connectivity of life beyond art, that traces how our everyday experiences shape us".
One of the most accessible works are three photographs from Cape Town-based Pieter Hugo's 1994 series. All three images show children from South Africa and Rwanda, with Hugo contrasting the vivid colours of the children's clothing and skin with muted backgrounds of rural life - they are stories of children "born on opposite sides of extreme darkness" as the catalogue states.
Among the powerful installations:
Analogues of Slavery, by Fiona Foley, with the black hoods embroidered with mother of pearl shells around the eye and nose outlets evoking a discussion about slavery and prejudice in Australia.
The Death Ritual video by Soojin Chang, depicting rites involving animals in South-East Asia.
Other works come from Lindy Lee, Jemima Wyman, Khadim Ali, Pierre Mukeba, Stanislava Pinchuk, Sarker Protick and Newcastle-based Mojgan Habibi.
The show runs through August 9.