Bridie Connell’s B-Girl Rhapsody

bridie connell

Sydney-based artist Bridie Connell opens a text-based, burlesque-inspired installation this Wednesday. We asked her to tell us more…

Hello Bridie. You are just about to launch your new show. Can you tell us a little about it?
Hello! My new show is called B-Girl Rhapsody. It’s a mixed media, text-based art installation at ALASKA Projects in Kings Cross. The terrifying/fun thing about installation art is I won’t know exactly what it will look like until it is installed but I can tell you it includes red velvet curtains, pink globe lights and pseudo intellectual art puns…

What’s your thinking behind the show? Where did the initial idea come from?
I’ve pitched it as a “poetic parody of the golden age of burlesque, the golden boys of modern art and the Golden Mile that is Kings Cross…” and as with all my recent projects it stems from my own experiences as a woman, an artist and a dancer. The show is named after a 1950s grindhouse film about a burlesque show and in itself is a burlesque – a parody – of an artwork and of myself as a burlesque performer. The 1950s are over but we still live in a society that consumes and condemns art and women, whilst romanticising the past. On more of an aesthetic level, I love strip clubs lights and theatre signs, the colour pink and bad jokes.

b_girl_rhapsody_poster_01We saw your previous show at ALASKA Projects. What is it that you like about working with ALASKA Projects?
I’ve been with ALASKA Projects since their debut exhibition in 2011 and they’ve been super supportive of my art since, providing opportunities for me to show my work locally, interstate and abroad. Of course, the location being in Kings Cross is close to home, close to my heart and relevant to my interests!

When can people come and check the show out?
The show opens on Wednesday the 24th of September and will be open on the Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 1 til 6pm.

And after that, you’re taking it to Oxford Art Factory, right? Tell us more…
Yes! I will be performing in the Oxford Art Factory cube space on the 5th and 6th of December. My performance will be an extension of the ALASKA installation, incorporating classic burlesque dance with contemporary club references in a peep show-like presentation. Currently in my mind I see gold chains and ostrich feather fans…

Do you have any other projects planned for the rest of the year or for 2015? 
My December performance is part of a larger project I’ve been working on for ALASKA Projects, curating a season of performance art for Free Fall at Oxford Art Factory – which is an ongoing series of performance an inter-media art presentations in the cube space. The line-up includes some of my favourite artists, including Imogen Kelly (aka the Queen of Burlesque), Daniel Mudie Cunningham and younger artists such as Jack Mannix, Jim Shirlaw and Zsa Zsa LaFine. Performances will be taking place each Friday and Saturday night in October, November and December and you can check out the facebook page for the full line up and my Instagram for updates on my projects!

Keep up to date with Bridie on Instagram.



Interview by Bobby Townsend