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‘Take me with you’ opening at The Riddoch

‘Take me with you’ opening at The Riddoch
06 May 2022

Artists Isobel Knowles and Van Sowerwine at work.
Isobel and Van 1
Artists Isobel Knowles and Van Sowerwine at work.

The Riddoch Arts and Culture Centre will open Take me with you by Isobel Knowles and Van Sowerwine on Friday 20 May 2022 at 6:00pm. Postponed from 2021 due to COVID-19 restrictions, the long-awaited exhibition will offer a rare insight into the artists’ practise across animation, installation, virtual reality and media art.

Isobel and Van have been making and experimenting with stop animation storytelling in collaboration for more than 20 years, and this exhibition brings together a showcase of some of their major works and career highlights.

Alongside a diverse selection of works that span over a decade of their practice, we are excited to feature some behind the scenes videos, a selection of the models, characters and sets.
- Riddoch Arts and Cultural Centre Team Leader Curatorial Serena Wong

“Specialising in immersive and heartfelt video installations, Take me with you aims to surprise audiences with the way it pushes stop animation into new territory.”

“This combination allows audiences to have a rare insight into the full scope of Isobel and Van’s diverse art practice,” Ms Wong said.

Their award-winning virtual reality work Passenger, together with the seven metre long set, behind the scenes video and other set pieces will be on display as part of the exhibition. It represents almost two years of work and is one of only a few stop-motion 360-degree ambisonic films in existence.

The animation is a highlight of the exhibition and takes viewers on a journey from the urban sprawl to the forest’s edge, guided by migrant taxi driver in the guise of a red-hooded plover.

“…Passenger was a journey into the unknown for us as filmmakers, in parallel to the journey the narrative takes the viewer on. We wanted to translate our experience constructing immersive worlds and telling unique stories in VR, learning a new language of 360 storytelling to create an experience that uses emotion and empathy to connect with viewers,” Van Sowerwine said.

Take me with you will also present stop-motion short Clara, which won a special mention at the Cannes Film Festival in 2005, Out In The Open (2016) created for the Melbourne International Arts Festival and the artists’ latest work Can’t do without you (2021), commissioned by Monash Gallery of Art, that responds to what happens when artists are forced to collaborate at a distance during COVID-19 lockdowns in Melbourne.

Both artists will be in attendance at the exhibition opening and will discuss their work, careers and their ambitious and heartfelt storytelling in conversation with Curator Serena Wong.

The Passenger VR experience is suitable for ages seven years and older and is available to view between 10:30am to 11:30am and 1:30pm to 2:30pm Monday to Friday and 10:30am to 11:30am on Saturday and Sundays.

The Riddoch Arts and Cultural Centre will also host local artist Kirsten Johnston as an artist in residence from 13 to 29 May 2022. Kirsten will paint live in the Cathleen Edkins Gallery between 10:30am and 1:30pm from Tuesday to Sunday.

The centre is open 7 days per week and entry is free. Take me with you will be on display until 17 July 2022.

Media contact: City of Mount Gambier Communications Officer Ashlea Watson on (08) 8721 2577 or awatson@mountgambier.sa.gov.au

The taxi driver model from the VR stop-motion animation Passenger.
Passenger taxi driver model
The taxi driver model from the VR stop-motion animation Passenger.

PASSENGER Trailer (HD) by Isobel Knowles & Van Sowerwine