The Aesthetics of Violence

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Through music, performance and scholarship, SEI presents an exploration of the forms of violence that surround us, hidden in plain sight.

About this Event

Over two evenings, an interdisciplinary collective of authors, researchers, and performers will share their experiences and insights into the ways that cycles of violence and fear endure in Australian bodies and in Australian landscapes. These events emerge from a wider project that combines artistic performance and academic scholarship to produce new perspectives and more engaging ways of communicating with each other and with our community. We invite you to enter into dark subjects and to embrace discomfort as a way of seeing, feeling, and hearing the voices of truth that emerge from acts of violence. Together, we must step out of denial and into personal and communal action.

The series will begin with a Welcome to Country performed by Sites of Violence contributor Yvonne Weldon, a Wiradjuri Woman, writer, volunteer, and advocate who works with a range of organisations throughout NSW on behalf of First Nations and wider Australian communities, places, and futures.

Aesthetics of Violence Part 2 of 2: Two Evenings with Sites of Violence series

We can’t call out violence in its myriad forms if we don’t know what it looks like, what it sounds like, or what it feels like. Join the panel as they share the potential of musical, written, and performative art to communicate through the physical bodies of the audience, transforming abstract and concepts of violence into visceral corporeal experiences and, hopefully, understanding.

On the panel will be Charlotte Wood, author of the multi-prize winning novel The Natural Way of Things exploring power, gender, and violence in Australia. Charlotte’s novel is the inspiration for the upcoming Sites of Violence immersive theatre work The foul of the air. Joining her will be multisensory composer Damien Ricketson, visual artist, author and Sydney Law School academic Carolyn McKay.


Dr Carolyn McKay, University of Sydney Law School, The University of Sydney

Dr Damien Ricketson, Sydney Conservatorium of Music, The University of Sydney

Michelle St Anne, Deputy Director and Operations Manager – Programming, Impact and Engagement, Sydney Environment Institute

Charlotte Wood, Prizewinning Author

This event is in partnership between the Sydney Environment Institute and The Living Room Theatre. It is part of the Sydney Environment Institute’s Sites of Violence research project, and is supported by the City of Sydney.

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