Swamphen #8: Particular Planetary Aesthetics

Guest edited by Louise Boscacci and Perdita Phillips, 2022 – for details of the launch on October 14 2022 go to Journal News

Particular Planetary Aesthetics is the title and theme of Volume 8 of Swamphen. It has its origins in Ngā Tūtaki – Encounter/s: Agency, Embodiment, Exchange, Ecologies, the 2019 conference of the Art Association of Australia and New Zealand (AAANZ) held in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, Aotearoa. Earlier in 2019, Louise Boscacci, Perdita Phillips and Sally Ann McIntyre had called for creative papers that explored encounters in a new frame of particular planetary aesthetics: moving from the particular, bodily or affective encounter to trace, reveal or refigure planetary connections, relations and concerns. The conference was held in December—a time when climate crisis fires raged in Australia and just before the COVID-19 pandemic started.

Eleven papers and three visual portfolios of art research in practice are presented in Swamphen #8 that responded to our provocations. These were written before and after the Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland conference with varying responses to the effects of COVID-19 and the increasing severity of environmental effects. Collectively these scholarly and aesthetic works consider, trace, and respond to affective encounters of the particular and the planetary in the capricious spaces of the Anthropocene-in-the-making.

Coming from artistic practice as research, many of the papers are rich in visual and sound imagery. Below are videos and sound from three of the papers.

Perdita Phillips “Seeping, Maintaining, Flooding and Repairing: How to Act in a Both/and World”

Wattie (2018) 1 min 17 sec https://vimeo.com/361410743 showing crown shyness of Taxandria juniperina at Tjuirtgellong/Lake Seppings in the middle of the city of Albany/Kinjarling.

Poking your iPhone down a drain (2019) 43 sec. Recorded on the flanks of Kardarup/Mt Melville

Phillips, Perdita. “Seeping, Maintaining, Flooding and Repairing: How to Act in a Both/and World.” Swamphen: A Journal of Cultural Ecology, vol. 8, 2022, pp. 1-25.

Heather Hesterman “Walking in Merri Circles,” a response to COVID-19

Walking in Merri Circles (2020) by Heather Hesterman https://vimeo.com/713548798

Hesterman, Heather. “Walking in Merri Circles.” Swamphen: A Journal of Cultural Ecology, vol. 8, 2022, pp. 1-11.

Walking playlist (includes: Bonobo, Boards of Canada, Sampa the Great, Christine and the Queens, and Eric Satie’s Gymnopédies) https://open.spotify.com/playlist/7roBvYlhv50bMozYg6tl2f?si=f1d5b62f778c4551

Janine Randerson “Kāpia: Fossils and Remedies”

Kāpia: Fossils and Remedies (2020) 4 min 34 sec https://www.circuit.org.nz/work/kapia-fossils-and-remedies Courtesy of Circuit Artist Moving Image Aotearoa New Zealand.

Randerson, Janine. “Kāpia: Fossils and Remedies: More-Than-Human Survivors.” Swamphen: A Journal of Cultural Ecology, vol. 8, 2022, pp. 1-8.

Swamphen: A Journal of Cultural Ecology is published through the University of Sydney and current and previous editions are available at:  https://openjournals.library.sydney.edu.au/index.php/Swamphen


Swamphen cover artwork and design by Charlie Perry