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By your side



Claudia Nicholson

Colombia, Australia

1987 –

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  • Details

    Media category
    Time-based art
    Materials used
    three channel digital video, colour, sound
    1/1 +1AP
    duration: 00:03:38 min, aspect ration: 16:9
    Contemporary Collection Benefactors 2020
    Not on display
    Accession number
    © Claudia Nicholson
    Artist information
    Claudia Nicholson

    Works in the collection


    Artist information
    In collaboration with Miss L, Miss J, Miss M, Miss H, Miss V and Miss T

    Works in the collection


  • About

    By your side 2019 was co-created by artist Claudia Nicholson and six young people whose families are currently seeking asylum in Australia. Nicholson often collaborates with community groups, such as choirs and dancers, to create performances that celebrate their shared experiences.

    In the work, the young people perform a dance that they choreographed with each other. They dance in pairs, with their sister or cousin, and are dressed in their own clothes with lo-fi disguises. Matching sweatshirts and sequinned dresses meet plastic superhero masks and bright green face paint. These costumes mix play and make-believe with an everyday reality – many people seeking asylum do not have their faces documented in public due to the risks they, their friends and their families may face here or back home.

    By your side is a powerful expression of who these young people are, their connection to each other, and their imaginative independence. It explores the sense of belonging that comes from a connection felt between people – a deep bond that is carried across time and geography – as well as acknowledges the complexities that arise from the very concept of ‘belonging’.

    Videography: Akil Ahamat and EO Gill
    Editing: Akil Ahamat
    Dramaturge: Sarah Rodigari
    Music: Chun Yin Rainbow Chan

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 1 exhibition

    • Belonging, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 09 Nov 2019–09 Feb 2020