1-11 AUGUST 2024 View all 2023 events

Event info

Presented by BLEACH* and HOTA, Home of the Arts Curated by Vanessa Tomlinson

Presented by BLEACH* and HOTA, Home of the Arts Curated by Vanessa Tomlinson

Choose your own aural adventure at this unique fusion of art and music.

Curated by Vanessa Tomlinson, witness HOTA Gallery come alive with musicians dotted amongst the unexplored spaces, spontaneously breaking out into jam sessions inspired by the gallery’s incredible collection of work, reverberating acoustics and timeless architecture. Guests are encouraged to wander, letting their senses be guided by the enchanting experience. Featuring a mix of cello, violin, flute, bass clarinet, trombone, piano and percussion, lose yourself in the alluring and evocative ambience of this sensory event.


The Imaginary Aviary is a chance to listen to a soundscape from the future – 8 new bird species that will appear in 10 years, 50 years, 500 years’ time.

What do they sound like? What could future birdsong be?
How will these species interact with one another?

In the Imaginary Aviary you will hear 8 of Australia’s leading musicians creating/composing/becoming 8 new bird species. We know nature is amazing. The birds we enjoy right now in 2023 are sonically intriguing. Think about the lyrebird, the butcherbird, the crow, fairy wrens, the magpie, the curlew, and the list goes on.

Each species has a clear recognisable and distinctive sound world.

Collated together by curator/composer Vanessa Tomlinson, inside the magical acoustic of the wood and glass stairwell at HOTA, the Imaginary Aviary welcomes diverse sounds of the future, moving our attention toward the appearance of the as-yet-unknown. Imagine listening in the future. Imagine air in the future. Imagine inter-action in the future. Imagine birds in the future as you wander up and down the stairway, listening from different vantage points.





Vanessa Tomlinson – curator/composer
Vanessa is a percussionist with a long history in experimental music. She uses this body of knowledge to make bold interdisciplinary sonic events that propose new futures for 21st century Australian music. Central to all her work is listening – opening our ears to paying attention to the world around us as we consider space and place, the human and the more-than-human. With an insatiable curiosity, Vanessa sonically investigates all kinds of objects to build compositions, create contexts for improvisation, and collaborate across art-forms and disciplines. She has toured the world for 30 years, premiering hundreds of works, collaborating with leading improvisers, presenting work at major international festivals, and sharing her knowledge as a teacher, mentor, university lecturer and arts advocate. Vanessa is currently Professor of Music, Director of Creative Arts Research Institute at Griffith University and co-director of Clocked Out.


Helen Svoboda – Double bassist/composer
Helen Svoboda is a double bassist, vocalist and composer. Her work explores the melodic potential of the contemporary double bass, intricately weaving extended techniques and overtones with vocal tessitura to explore themes of sonic unity amidst abstract song-writing. “A musician who absolutely defies categorisation” (Andrew Ford – The Music Show, ABC), her performance practice emits a childlike, quirky energy, with a flair for “allowing difficult ideas to sound whimsical and free” (Kristin Berardi, AUS).

Accolades include: 2023-24 Musica Viva Australia FutureMaker; 2023 MOMENTUM Commissions (Australian Music Centre); 2020 Freedman Jazz Fellowship (winner); 2020/21 Australian Art Orchestra Pathfinder; Helsinki International Artist Programme 2023 (recipient – supported by Australia Council for the Arts).


Peter Knight – Trumpet/composer
Perpetually curious, composer/trumpeter/sound artist Peter Knight’s practice exists in the spaces between categories, between genres, and between cultures.

Peter is a significant international force in contemporary music, initiating commissions, collaborations, and performances with a diverse range of artists including, Anthony Braxton (USA), as a soloist with Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Hand to Earth (Arnhem Land/Korea), Senyawa (Indonesia), Baliphonics (Sri Lanka), Hyelim Kim (Korea/UK), and Alvin Lucier (USA). His most recent release is a solo record on Room40, Shadow Phase, which was named among Best Releases of 2022 by Headphone Commute. Peter also composes for contemporary theatre, film, and creates sound installations. From 2013-23 he was artistic director/Co-CEO of the Australian Art Orchestra. Peter has been awarded the Albert H. Maggs Composition Prize, Awards from AMC Art Music Bell Jazz, Green Room Theatre, Songlines (UK), and ARIA, along with a prestigious Australia Council Music Fellowship (2013). He holds a doctorate from Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University and was named Alumnus of the Year in 2013.


Tara Pattenden – tactile synthesizers/composer
Tara Pattenden performs with her self made tactile synthesizers that
control sound through squeezing and stretching. She is an artist, creative technologist and educator who produces work that engages the audience through encouraging play and democratising creativity, working across performance, sculpture, soft circuitry and creative coding. Tara has been making noise and mess for over 20 years performing solo as Phantom Chips as well as in bands such as Kunt, Monster Zoku Onsomb, BodyVice, the FCKN BSTRDS and Goodiepal and Pals, at Tectonics in Glasgow, Novas Frequências in Rio de Janeiro as well as recent temporary public art works across Brisbane.


Hannah Reardon-Smith – flutes/composer
cyberBanshee aka Hannah Reardon-Smith (they/them) is a settler flutist, electronic musician, composer, thinker and improviser living on the unceded land of the Yuggera Ugarapul and Turrbal Peoples. Their music explores the sweetness in unsettling difficulty, and reveals the monsters lurking in traditionally beautiful instruments. Their work and thinking are rooted in queer and feminist collaborative and contaminative co-creation with other soundmakers and artmakers, physical and social environments, ecologies, histories, and narratives, exploring the possibilities of making-kin and finding agency within community. cyberBanshee is a musical haunting/invocation rooted in the understanding that the musicker is never alone.


Erik Griswold – piano/composer
Erik Griswold is a composer and pianist working in contemporary classical, improvised, and experimental forms. Particular interests include prepared piano, percussion, environmental music, and music of Sichuan province. Originally from San Diego, and now residing in Brisbane, he composes for adventurous musicians, performs as a soloist and in Clocked Out, and collaborates with musicians, artists, dancers, and poets. His music has been performed in Carnegie Hall, Sydney Opera House, Cafe Oto, Chengdu Arts Centre, Melbourne Festival, OzAsia Festival, and Brisbane Festival, among others. He is a recipient of an Australia Council Fellowship in Music, a Civitella Ranieri Fellowship, and numerous individual grants.
His music can be heard on Cold Blue, Immediata, Room40, Innova, Sonoluminus, Mode Records, Tall Poppies, Move, and Clocked Out.


Jodie Rottle – flute/composer
Dr Jodie Rottle (she/her) is a creative flutist, researcher, lecturer, composer, and improviser who explores the curious and surprising sounds of everyday objects. Sought after for her whimsical perspective, her work within music often extends into performance art, puppetry, circus, installation art, and interdisciplinary realms. Currently, Jodie is a member of the two-time Queensland Music Award-winning ensemble Matt Hsu’s Obscure Orchestra; the Resident Adjunct at the Creative Arts Research Institute Griffith University; and a lecturer at JMC Academy Brisbane. She is a represented composer with the Australian Music Centre.


Chris Stover – trombone/composer
Chris Stover is a composer, trombonist, music scholar and teacher. He is currently finishing two books: a volume on transformative music theory teaching and learning called Reimagining Music Theory which is under contract with Routledge, and a volume titled Timeline Spaces, under contract with Oxford University Press.
In 2015/16 he was a Fulbright Fellow in Brazil, research folkloric music, and has been a Fellow at the Graduate Institute for Design, Ethnography and Social Thought at the New School, and a Research Fellow at the RITMO Centre for Interdisciplinary Study in Rhythm Time and Motion, University of Oslo. Chris is currently Senior Lecturer of Music Studies and Research at Queensland Conservatorium, Griffith University (Brisbane), researching on musical interaction and improvisation, philosophy, temporal processes in African and Afro-diasporic musics, and feminist, queer, postcolonial and phenomenological approaches to thinking about music, including music analysis.


Flora Wong – violin/composer
Flora Wong (黃芷蕾) is a musician, creative producer, educator and researcher with a passion for storytelling through music and the exploration of culture and identity through the arts. Born in Hong Kong, she has lived and worked in Meanjin/Brisbane for most of her life, but her work has taken her all over Australia and the world. She is a member of Meanjin/Brisbane-based ensembles Nonsemble, Voltfruit, Tango Enigmático and Matt Hsu’s Obscure Orchestra, and Co-Director of Dots+Loops.
She is currently a PhD candidate at Griffith University’s Creative Arts Research Institute as part of the Creative Change Project, which examines the role of community music in addressing social inequities in Australia. Her research partners with QMF and their Queensland Music Trails initiative to investigate the role of community music in fostering social equity in the South West Queensland towns of Charleville and Cunnamulla.


Vanessa Tomlinson

Dedicated to exploring how sound shapes our lives and awakens our soul, percussive artist Professor Vanessa Tomlinson uses a variety of instruments and objects to craft immersive sensory experiences. Using her knowledge of time, space and objects to build haunting compositions, Vanessa has spent more than 25 years touring the world before bringing her incredible sound to BLEACH*.

    • Wheelchair access
    • Accessible toilet
    • Primarily Audio based content
    • Language is no barrier

    This work is a self-guided experience. Audience members are encouraged to move throughout the space at their own pace and encounter the artists as they perform and react to the space around them. Audience members will be able to use stairs or lift to travel through the building.

    The performances will be primarily sound and/or music based, with some visual elements (including the existing HOTA artwork).

    Audience members are asked to note that they observe the following guidelines during the performance:

    - They do not touch the artworks or the performers unless they are specifically invited to do so
    - Eating and drinking is not allowed in the HOTA Gallery
    - Photos are permitted but no flash please

    Access information for the HOTA Gallery can be found on our Accessibility page or on the HOTA website.

    Click here for more information.

    Photo CreditJorge Serra
    Free / Register

    Registration required

    You must register to attend this free event.

    HOTA Gallery

    HOTA, Home of the Arts, 135 Bundall RdSurfers Paradise QLD 4217

    Book free ticket

    Book multiple events and save!

    Save up to 20% with our multipack ticketing discounts! More info

    Saturday 05 Aug10:30 AM11:30 AM12:30 PM2:00 PM3:00 PM
    All times are QLD AEST
    Important Info
    • Food & beverage available on site
    • Transport options available
    • Suitable for all ages
    • Parking
    • Free / Register
    • Music
    • Visual Art

    Similar Events

    We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the Yugambeh Language Region and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People of the Gold Coast. We recognise their continuing connection and contributions to country and culture. We pay respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.