The Red Carpet is a documentation photograph of an architectural intervention and performance work, transposing a Ukrainian Bessarabian rug onto the steps of the Sydney Opera House.
In the work, the architectural intervention becomes a metaphorical red carpet for the Sydney Opera House – acknowledging the history and labour of women’s domestic arts as the foundation leading to starchitecture.
Commissioned by AAW : Sydney Opera House, 2020.
Curated & Co-produced by Antidote Projects.
Within its ornamental design, The Red Carpet contains a data-map of the damaged topography of Kiev’s Maidan square protests, surveyed by the artist. The fatal pro-democracy uprising marked the beginning of Ukraine’s illegal invasion, annexation and ongoing 7 year civil war.
In combining data & textiles, The Red Carpet references a wider canon of women recording their experiences of conflict through the art mediums which were most commonly available to them across history & place: needle, loom and thread.
Shot overnight earlier in the year, the artwork mixes track-mapping on-site, as well as set-building & post-production – the work also documents the bushfire haze from Australia’s tragic summer.
Given architect Jørn Utzon’s highly public, embittered relationship with the Sydney Opera House – The Red Carpet speaks in dialogue to his enthusiasm that the building be used by artists as a town square – a Maidan – of its own, and specifically as a site of protest for humanitarian justice.
Town-square to town-square, the work stands in solidarity between the artist’s two homes.