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Contemporary art

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Title

Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi [Democratic Torture]

2003


Artist

Mike Parr

Australia

1945 -


About

'Aussie Aussie, Aussie, oi, oi, oi [Democratic torture]' is a video work documenting a brutal, politically inspired performance by Mike Parr at Artspace, Sydney on 2-3 May 2003. It entailed Parr's wife, Felizitas, sewing his face together with a needle and thread in protest at the Australian Government’s participation in the invasion of Iraq in 2003 and the blinkered coverage by right wing-press in Australia.

Following the suture, Parr sat in a chair for 30 hours, his face contorted and clothes stained with blood, with a miniature Australian flag tucked under his arm stump. Projected on the wall behind him was text partly sourced from news headlines. The performance was streamed online in real-time and during the last 6 hours people watching on their computers could induce further pain by sadistically shocking Parr with the click of a button. Parr wryly christened the ordeal ‘Aussie Aussie, Aussie, oi,oi,oi, ’ a patriotic catch-cry commonly chanted by crowds at sporting events in Australia.

By publicly and passively subjecting himself to this abject and violent act, Parr gestured to the atrocities of war and the prevalence of conservative politics and collective macho nationalism, which had reached a crescendo in Australian society in the early to mid-2000s.


Details


Date

2003


Media category

Time-based art


Materials used

16mm film shown as single channel digital video, colour, sound


Edition

AP, from an edition of 3 + 2 AP


Dimensions

duration: 00:32:05 min continuous, aspect ratio: 16:9


Signature & date

Signed and dated certificate of authenticity, black fibre tipped pen "Mike Parr 21.10.2019".


Credit

Gift of the artist 2019. Donated through the Australian Government’s Cultural Gifts Program


Location

Not on display


Accession number

212.2019


Artist information

Mike Parr

Works in the collection

79