ACCA Open has opened


Sean Peoples, 'Thought experiment (Australia)', 2019, single-channel video still. Courtesy the artist.

The Australian Centre for Contemporary Art (ACCA) first two projects have been launched this week, beginning a new series of digital commissions to be unveiled via ACCA's new artonline platform.


Announced in April, ACCA Open was conceived as a way for ACCA to continue to support contemporary artists and engage with online audiences during COVID-19 related gallery closures. Australian artists from all backgrounds, career levels and practices were invited to submit ideas for projects that could be presented through digital platforms. Six projects were selected from a pool of over 340 submissions, the first two of which will be launched this week, including How much time do we have? and Neighbour.


How much time do we have?, by artists Madeleine Flynn and Tim Humphrey is an ever-evolving, live-generated audiovisual piece of breaks, flows, segments, junctures and shifts made during the timeless state of the present evernow, How much time do we have? is a site-specific and time-based work made in the midst of a global pandemic.



Broadcast precariously from a single computer located at the artists’ studio, the work will eventually fade from view when Stage 4 Restrictions are lifted in Melbourne. This real time event provides a finite – if unpredictable – duration for a work that creates space for audiences to experience both alone, and in connection with others, in a virtual sphere, at a time when our physical worlds are limited.


Neighbour is a collaboration between artist and choreographer Amrita Hepi and writer, neuroscientist and psychiatrist Sam Lieblich. Deploying language, movement and neuroscience to consider the increasing prevalence of algorithmic subjectivity, Neighbour, an AI chatbot posing on ACCA’s website as a virtual assistant, is available for conversations about human-ness and the current global crisis, and is accumulating knowledge from these interactions in an attempt to locate the enigmatic ‘it’ that we, as humans, are.


'Neighbour' preview


“We’re pleased to launch the first two projects for ACCA Open,” said Max Delany, Artistic Director & CEO of ACCA.


“One of the intentions of the series was to support artists to develop their practice in new ways while galleries across the country were closed. Traversing the fields of artificial intelligence, sound, animation, video and archives, each of the six new commissions speak to the breadth of possibility for artists working in the digital realm, whilst also responding to the unusual times and cultural conditions in which they are produced.”


Four further projects for ACCA Open will be launched in coming months including exhibitions and artists talks:


Multiply and AOAULI

On 30 September

Melbourne interdisciplinary artist Archie Barry’s Multiply and Sāmoan-Australian artist, curator and researcher Dr Léuli Eshrāghi’s AOAULI.


OFFWORLD and The Magic Mountain

On 28 October

Melbourne artist Sean Peoples’ OFFWORLD and NSW artist and filmmaker Zanny Begg’s The Magic Mountain.


Artist Talks / Zoom webinars

Thursday 17 September (5-6pm)

Amrita Hepi & Sam Lieblich, Madeleine Flynn & Tim Humphrey, Archie Barry


Thursday 29 October (5-6pm)

Léuli Eshrāghi, Sean Peoples and Zanny Begg


Pictures: Zanny Begg, (from The Beehive, 2018 (still). Courtesy the artist), Léuli Eshrāghi, (re(cul)naissance 2020 (detail), installation view in NIRIN 22nd Biennale of Sydney, 2020. Courtesy the artist), Archie Barry (At home with groin bubble bird, 2019 (performance still), live performance, approx. 20 mins. Courtesy the artist. Photograph: Lucy Foster), Sean Peoples, Squeaky moon 2018 (still), single-channel video. Courtesy the artist)


The ACCA website also contains information on the opening of NIRIN NAARM, the Melbourne satellite exhibition of selected works from NIRIN, the landmark 22nd Biennale of Sydney.


For more information on ACCA Open, be sure to check out their website for details and don't miss out on these online events!

ACCA Website

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