Som Chai meets my family & friends
I am so excited that Som Chai is now in Oz and has been granted a partner visa.
He's met my family and friends, and even come along to Uni with me.
It is wonderful having him here with me - no more lonely nights or awkward outings on my own!
I can throw my wish list in the fire now because he fulfils all my dreams. I am so proud of him - he is charismatic, generous and kind, and he is also Budhist and a meditator!
I wondered whether there was a difference between art made by a human and art made by a machine? So I made a fan that painted, and I became a painting human fan.
Conclusion: there was no difference.
Just an Ordinary Peasant is based on my uncle’s experience as an inmate at Treblinka extermination camp in 1944. His memoir recounts that while being forced to carry corpses from the gas chambers to an open-air pyre, he was handed a sack which held little children who were still alive. The guard commanded the sack be thrown into the fire. The woman I play in Just an Ordinary Peasant is a hybrid character created from the memoirs of my uncle, my parents and my own research. She sings and dances and also throws a sack of babies into the fire. This piece explores my own biases as well as questions the culpability of ‘ordinary people’ who were accomplices to the atrocities carried out during the Third Reich.
There has never been a time in my life that I have not immersed myself in Art. From a very young age I was left alone with my pencils and paints whilst my parents, still making up for lost time, either went out to work or partied hard with their friends.
I was born in Melbourne, Australia to Adolek and Marysia Kohn. In their early 20s they left Poland after having escaped the gas chambers of Auschwitz. Their social life was filled with friends who also mourned the death of parents, siblings and communities and so my parents’ experiences were not unique to them.
But the stories my parents told me and the way they celebrated with energy and optimism, hosting crazy dress up parties, organising picnics in the woods and dancing till dawn - these memories have been the core inspiration of my life.
Throughout my life I have immersed myself in many different forms of artistic expression starting with painting and photography, Graphic Design, Judaica (Jewish texts and illuminated scrolls), wall murals, designing and building furniture, video production and editing, culminating in Performance Art. This last medium channels my life experiences and the themes that I have been drawn to since childhood.