5 Minutes with...NITHYA NAGARAJAN 'Hatch Event Facilitator'

Published on 22 March 2022

Nithya Nagarajan
  1. What influences and inspires your creative practice?
    • Courage.


  2. What does the term “arts and culture” mean to you?
    • In the context of Australia, any conversation on arts and culture must begin from the 60,000 years of unbroken storytelling on this land by First Nations peoples. The art critic John McDonald recently published a piece pitting First Nations folk practices ‘against’ contemporary expressions. Heaven forbid, they be both. Some of the most interesting artists I know are First Nations: Jazz Money, Tara June Winch, SJ Norman in literature; Katina Olsen, Dalisa Pigram, Jacob Boehme in dance and contemporary performance; Jacob Nash, Nathan Maynard, Nakkiah Lui in theatre; Megan Cope, Richard Bell, Paola Balla in visual arts; Alice Skye, Ziggy Ramo, DRMNGNOW in music; Joel Spring, Amrita Hepi, Unbound Collective in experimental practice and so on and so forth, scaffolded by radical curatorial interventions by Blak curators and producers such as Clothilde Bullen, Kimberley Moulton, Ali Murphy-Oates, Erica McCalman, this mob. My examples are Sydney and Melbourne specific as these are the two cities I’ve lived in as a settler but I also know through my work at the Australia Council that there are powerful First Nations artists and truth-tellers spread across the length and breadth of this continent. It behoves all of us, including John McDonald, to pay attention.


  3. Out of curiosity, what is your perception of Frankton? Be honest!
    • I have only ever been to Frankston once. But having lived in Sydney for the last three years, and seeing the infrastructure, scaffolding, resources and support for artists across the span of Western Sydney - and what that has generated for a whole generation of artists rooted in place, decentralised in their artmaking and confident in their gaze outward has forever changed my view on  the need for pipelines and pathways for artists outside of city centres. In Australia, we have much conversation on art in inner city scapes and regional and remote Australia, but we don’t have enough conversation on art in outer suburbs where many working class and racially marginalised people live. This needs to change for us to have a landscape truly reflective of contemporary Australia.


  4. How do you view the relationship between the artistic creator and audience?
    • Co-authorship.


  5. What song would be your theme song in the movie adaptation of your life?
    • Aik Alif: Noori and Saieen Zahoor. 


  6. Describe yourself or artistic practice in five words (Note: you are infinitely awesome beyond these 5 words).
    • Collaborative

    • Feminist

    • Intertextual

    • Movement-inspired. 



Book now for Nithya Nagarajan's online HATCH workshop, The Mechanics of Making New Work, for the South Side Festival at the new postponed date of Tuesday 9 August, 6.30pm - 8.30pm. Registrations essential. Click the link for details.

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