Tristan Meecham is a performance artist who places the social rights of the LGBTI+ community at the core of his work.
Tristan’s five-month project, which will take place in Melbourne and in the USA, will see him undertaking research and conducting interviews into the different viewpoints that exist in the community in relation to homophobia and same sex marriage. Working with producers John Molloy and Richard Kelly (John Safran’s Race Relations) Tristan will explore how the project could be developed for the screen and how it could be translated into live public presentations.
What does being awarded a Creators Fund grant mean to you?
The Creators Fund provides valuable time over a number of months to interrogate an artistic idea and focus on the process of making, rather than the pressure of presentation. For an independent artist, this is a rare and privileged opportunity.
How important is 'time' to you, as an artist/creative professional?
Time is one of the most important elements for developing quality work. From past experiences, long development time result in enriched and layered outcomes. In my ongoing practice, time is especially important when collaborating with different community groups, so as to scaffold different contexts and experiences together and ensure everyone has creative agency.
What are you most looking forward to over the months ahead?
My Creators Fund investigation is very unusual; it both excites and scares me. I hope to use the time to interrogate ways people with vastly different opinions can have reasoned debate, and if possible to find common ground. In the project, I will also reflect on my own prejudices and the times when I haven’t been able to shift my standpoint. The project is an investigation into diplomacy, negotiation, reflection and deep listening.
Where would like to see yourself at the end of this process? How do you anticipate your career will develop as a result?
I hope this process will result in a personal and professional learning. I will also investigate how my art practice translates in international contexts (specifically the US). During this time, I hope to connect with new collaborators and new artistic forms, including refining my interview and performance skills.