WEBCAST #0001 IS ON 21 JUNE 2005 AT 21:58 FROM PARIS
AND CONTINUES FOR 1001 NIGHTS

In 1001 nights cast, Barbara Campbell performs a short text-based work for 1001 consecutive nights. The performance is relayed as a live webcast to anyone, anywhere, who is logged on to http://1001.net.au at the appointed time, that is, sunset at the artist’s location.

A frame story written by the artist introduces the project’s nightly performances. It is a survival story and it creates the context for subsequent stories generated daily through writer/performer collaborations made possible by the reach of the internet.

Each morning Barbara reads journalists’ reports covering events in the Middle East. She selects a prompt word or phrase that leaps from the page with generative potential. She renders the prompt in watercolour and posts it in its new pictorial form on the website. Participants are then invited to write a story using that day’s prompt in a submission of up to 1001 words. The writing deadline expires three hours before that night’s performance.

1001 nights cast is a project generated by the forces of that great compendium of Arabian tales, The 1001 Nights also known as The Arabian Nights. The project explores the theatrics of the voiced story, the need for framing devices, the strategies for survival, the allure of the Middle East and its contrasting realities.

About the artist:

Barbara Campbell is an Australian artist who works primarily in the medium of performance. Since 1982 she has worked with the specific physical and contextual properties of a given site, be it art gallery, museum, atrium, tower, radio airwaves and now the internet, in developing and presenting her works.

After completing undergraduate degrees in fine arts and art history, Barbara Campbell was awarded a Master of Visual Arts from Sydney College of the Arts, The University of Sydney in 1998. She has undertaken residencies at Griffith University, Queensland, The University of Melbourne, The University of Sydney and the Australia Council studios in Santa Monica and New York. In 1994 the NSW Ministry for the Arts awarded her the Women and Arts Fellowship and in 2004 she received one of four Fellowship grants awarded by the Visual Arts/Craft Board of the Australia Council for the Arts.

Prior to 1001 nights cast, Barbara Campbell’s most recent performance/ exhibition was The Grimwade Effect at the Ian Potter Museum of Art, University of Melbourne in October-December, 2003. This project was the result of her Macgeorge Fellowship at the University of Melbourne in 2002. The Grimwade Effect was reconfigured at the CraftACT Gallery, Canberra for Metis in May 2004.

Between 1996 and 2001 Campbell developed and presented work at various sites around The University of Sydney. These came together in the survey exhibition Flesh Winnow, in 2002. The accompanying collection of essays of the same name was published jointly by the Department of Performance Studies and the Power Institute: Foundation for Art and Visual Culture of The University of Sydney.

Although performance art is by its nature ephemeral, artefacts and objects created in and around Campbell’s performances are in the collections of the National Gallery of Australia; Griffith University; Queensland University; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney; the State Library of Queensland and the Museum of Modern Art, New York. She was also commissioned to create Cameral, a public art work for the ACT Legislative Assembly, Canberra in 2001.

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