un Projects is based on the unceded sovereign land and waters of the Wurundjeri and Boon Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation; we pay our respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging.
un Projects

Melinda Reid

Reluctant bin chickens of neoliberalised education

Australian White Ibises are better known as bin chickens to most Sydney-siders. The nickname derives from the species reliance on rubbish and public bins to sustain themselves. Ibises are naturally inclined towards a diet of insects and molluscs, but with the loss of their wetland habitats to climate change and land redevelopments, they have been […]

Sophie Chauhan

Disorienting the Classroom: A Response to The Undercommons

We’re already here, moving. We’ve been around. We’re more than politics, more than settled, more than democratic. We surround democracy’s false image in order to unsettle it. Every time it tries to enclose us in a decision, we’re undecided. Every time it tries to represent our will, we’re unwilling. Every time it tries to take […]

Michael Stevenson

Serene Velocity in Practice: MC510/CS183

Serene Velocity in Practice: MC510/ CS183* (2017-19) imagines two classrooms, each based on a real course taught by adjunct lecturers in United States’ tertiary education institutions. Evangelical pastor John Wimber taught ‘MC510: Signs and Wonders’ in the School of World Mission and Church Growth at Fuller Theological Seminary between 1982 and 1986. Silicon Valley entrepreneur […]

Richard Birkett

Media Urban Crisis: The University, Distributive Justice and Social Dialogue

The following text is developed from a body of research originally produced as part of The Combative Phase, an exhibition of films and documents and a series of programs held at Yale Union (Portland, US) in 2017. Left to themselves, large communities do a dreadful job of communicating internally. Ghettoes, whether in Bel Air or […]

Carol Que and Joel Sherwood-Spring

We smell the sulfur: institutional extraction, student bodies, Indigenous lands

The words below form multiple threads of preliminary thoughts shared between Joel Sherwood-Spring and Carol Que from December 2018 to August 2019. Both young academics tenuously located between the institution and their creative and political work ‘outside’, the conversation here spans lands, architectures, gentrification, and education. Joel’s words are indented and Carol’s are left aligned.[^1] […]

Paul Boyé

Feeling Failure: On the Creative Destruction of Artlaab

Artlaab was a University of Western Australia (UWA) School of Design student-run gallery in the Nedlands Masonic Hall. For many of us, Artlaab was the site of early experiments in curation, installation, studio practice and performance. As a past facilitator of Artlaab, I have written this essay to question how its institutional conditions led to […]

Rosemary Overell

Who Said It?

Who said it? is a tweeted intervention drawing attention to how the language of the contemporary University is little different to the language of corporate marketing. Pivoting off the imperative that the University must ‘take its place’ in a marketised world, I tweet copy from University promotional material alongside that of merchant banks, real estate […]

Kym Maxwell

Flip Flops in Intergenerational Knowledge and Data

Kym Maxwell is an artist and educator residing in the Kulin Nation of Naarm (Melbourne).

Hugh Childers and Bobuq Sayed

The Melbourne Model

The previous issue of un Magazine observed the reinforcement of external borders following Nine Eleven. Here, our attention turns towards the collapsing logics of internal categories and departmental demarcations. We trace this line of enquiry within the context of The University of Melbourne and the introduction of ‘The Melbourne Model.’ We’re working with the understanding […]

Anonymous

Australian Indigenous Studies: Operating in the Temporary Autonomous Zone

This document addresses the relationship between Australian Indigenous Studies (AIS) andThe University of Melbourne. The way The University of Melbourne exerts power over marginalised communities, and their epistemologies, will be familiar to anyone who has gone through similar treatment in the academy. It is exerted through physical and disciplinary fragmentation of offices and departments, through […]

Members of the Samoa House Library board

Readings

Samoa House Library was created in response to The University of Auckland’s decision to close three specialist libraries: Fine Arts, Music and Dance, Architecture and Urban Planning. As members of ‘Save the Fine Arts Library’ campaign, we organised to raise public awareness of the decision and to halt the closures. While our campaign was successful […]

Torika Bolatagici

The Making of Space

Whenever we establish our spaces, specifically for us, those spaces are inherently seen as threats.[^1] Joseph Cullier, cofounder of The Black School In his address to the 2018 Distinguished Alumni Awards Dinner for the University of Auckland, Fijian Pākehā artist Luke Willis Thompson described receiving his first undergraduate scholarship as ‘a moment of mobility … […]

Safdar Ahmed

Aesthetics of Racism in the Editorial Cartoon

The cartoon is a type of visual shorthand that says a lot about how we view ourselves and others. From one-off newspaper images to serialised comics, cartoons supply a pictorial genealogy of racist tropes that began in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and persist to the present day. Cartoons create meaning through the manipulation of […]

Ava Amedi

Two Twins

I’m just a singer of simple songs, I’m not a real political man. I watch CNN, but I’m not sure I can tell you the difference in Iraq and Iran. Alan Jackson, ‘Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)’ When kitsch aesthetics and moral conventions converge, we observe the emergence of kitsch ethics. This […]

Freya Rose

Desaparecido

History is the fruit of power, but power itself is never so transparent that its analysis becomes superfluous. The ultimate mark of power may be its invisibility; the ultimate challenge, the exposition of its roots.[^1]— Michel-Rolph Trouillot On 11 September 1973 the socialist president of Chile, Salvador Allende, was deposed and murdered in a military […]

Tim Marvin

How to make an anti-terror bollard

Destiny Deacon

Whacked

Destiny Deacon Waiting for the bust (2007) Lightjet print from Polaroid original, 80 x 100 cm Courtesy of the artist and Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney Destiny Deacon The goodie hoodie family (2007) Lightjet print from Polaroid original, 80 x 100 cm Courtesy of the artist and Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney Destiny Deacon Whacked & coming […]

Holly Keys

Carnage in the Eye of the Beholder: On Postmodernism and Nine Eleven

In the 1980s, French philosopher Jean Baudrillard asked, ‘Why does the World Trade Center have two towers?’[^1] The towers functioned, before Nine Eleven, as parallel surfaces mirroring one another. They became a symbol for the irrelevance of difference in a post-political world where acts disappear without consequence. A one-dimensional society. The symbolic eliminates difference in […]

Gilbert Caluya

Big Brother: Securitainment and the Racialised Logic of Suspicion

There is a tendency in contemporary life for artists, academics, authors and activists to view Nine Eleven as the beginning of the Western world’s demise into fragmented populist nationalisms, reigniting the Cold War by substituting ‘Islamic terrorism’ for ‘Russian communism’. Although there is some truth to this myth, there is a danger when projecting American […]

Hugh Childers and Bobuq Sayed

We Got ‘im

A child born and raised in Western Sydney announces to his class that he wants to be a terrorist when he grows up. Pauline Hanson, dressed in a burqa purchased especially for the occasion, passes through security at Parliament House unquestioned. A man unofficially affiliated with ISIS takes hostages at a Lindt chocolate cafe, displaying […]

Hoda Afshar and Behrouz Boochani

Beyond Human: Artists in Conversation

Behrouz Boochani is translated from Farsi by Dr. Omid Tofighian, American University in Cairo/ University of Sydney. Hoda Afshar : In our different areas, we both make connections between real and fictionalised events, partly in order to question through art-making how certain narrative-truths are constructed. History and poetry, documentary and staged images, combine in our […]

Carol Que

On Material Speculation

I studied in the original coloniser country, the United Kingdom. While I was there, I visited a lot of museums with stolen art and cultural objects. The first time I visited the British Museum I was overcome with rage and sadness. Back then, I was surprised at my strong reactions to material objects not from […]

Dale Harding

His legacy to the colony; their ongoing privilege

Artist statement, 2019 In October 1857, Aborigines attacked a sleeping homestead on the Dawson River, Queensland, and killed all the inhabitants except a young boy who was knocked unconscious and left for dead. After the raiders had gone, he escaped and raised the alarm. The subsequent white retribution, headed by William Fraser, the eldest son […]

Bahar Sayed

Cruelty and the Theatre of Jihad

The true believers are the ones who have faith in God and his Messenger and leave all doubt behind. The ones who have struggled with their possessions and their persons in Gods way: they are the ones who are true. Qur’an 49:15 The verse above belongs to a Qur’anic surah. It instructs believers on how […]

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