PART 6. Space is happening (as we make it)

Helen Grogan, PART 5. Migrating frames (of space and view). Courtesy the artist. Photo: Laura May Grogan

Helen Grogan, SPECIFIC IN-BETWEEN (The choreographic negotiated in six parts)
PART 6. Space is happening (as we make it)

Shelley Lasica performs AS WE MAKE IT. The work is part of Lasica’s ongoing interest in using the gallery context to explore modes of communication and exchange in making dance performance. Part 4. Space is happening (as we make it) facilitates the performance AS WE MAKE IT in the spatial context that this dance is designed for. This is not a dance transplanted from the theatre. The space, or more specifically non-theatrical space, is integral to AS WE MAKE IT.

Lasica developed AS WE MAKE IT from BEHAVIOUR Part 5, 1994 and BEHAVIOUR Part 6, Square Dance, 1996 originally shown at Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne. There are also elements of the choreography VIANNE, 2008 within the work. Other versions of AS WE MAKE IT have been shown at Mina no ie, 2013 and Melbourne Now, National Gallery of Victoria, 2014.

Lasica’s performance is followed by discussion with Shelley Lasica, Helen Grogan and Hannah Mathews.



Space is happening (as we make it) ONLINE CONTRIBUTIONS


Justin Clemens has contributed the following writing to Part 6. Space is happening (As we make it) of SPECIFIC IN-BETWEEN (the choreographic negotiated in six parts).

Vianne, Vianne, again; or, the same another, 2012, Justin Clemens


Helen Grogan has contributed the following writing to Part 6. Space is happening (As we make it) of SPECIFIC IN-BETWEEN (the choreographic negotiated in six parts).

Thoughts on Shelley Lasica’s choreography: In the same moment, specific and unduplicatable, 2014, Helen Grogan



Shelley Lasica is an Australian choreographer and dancer whose practice is characterized by cross-disciplinary collaborations and an interest in the presentation of dance in various spatial contexts.

The prolific and vast repertoire of Lasica’s choreographic works and installations spans 30 years and includes Melbourne Festival, National Gallery of Victoria, Centre Nationale de la Danse (Pantin, Paris); Siobhan Davies Studios (London), Dance Massive and Anna Schwartz Gallery.

Her career illustrates an enduring interest in thinking about dance and movement and the many contexts in which they occur. She is concerned with what dance means to people, how it functions and how it can be used to shape our experience of the world. Major themes explored in her work are the interaction between spoken, written and movement language, loss of memory and senses, coincidence and the subject of space.

Lasica is highly recognised as a mentor and creative agent facilitating the development of successful choreographers and dancers.

Recent works and collaborations include Represent (2014), with Tony Clark, and two works as part of Melbourne Now (2014): Inside Vianne Again (2014), with artists Helen Grogan and Anne-Marie May, and As we make it.

Lasica was recently awarded the 2014 ANAT / Synapse Residency with the Centre for Eye Research, University of Melbourne, where she will work with both sighted and vision-impaired participants at the junction between contemporary dance and scientific enquiry in the realm of proprioception. Her new work SOLOS FOR OTHER PEOPLE in which she will make 10 solos for ten dancers performed together will be premiered in Melbourne in March 2015.


Justin Clemens gained his PhD from the University of Melbourne. He has published extensively on psychoanalysis, contemporary European philosophy, and contemporary Australian art and literature. His recent books include Lacan Deleuze Badiou (Edinburgh UP 2014), with A.J. Bartlett and Jon Roffe; Psychoanalysis is an Antiphilosophy (Edinburgh UP 2013); and Minimal Domination (Surpllus 2011). He was founding Secretary of the Lacan Circle of Melbourne (2004-2009), and was the art critic for the Australian magazine The Monthly (2004-2009). In addition to his scholarly work, he is well-known nationally as a commentator on Australian art and literature, and his essays and reviews have appeared in The Age, The Australian, The Monthly, Meanjin, Overland, Arena Magazine, TEXT, Un Magazine, Discipline, The Sydney Review of Books, and many others. He is currently Senior Lecturer in the School of Culture and Communication at the University of Melbourne.


Helen Grogan’s practice activates and articulates space through sculptural, photographic, filmic and performative means. With a particular focus on what is already here and already happening, Grogan’s works seek an embodied attention to the presence and materiality of our surroundings. She works to implicate spatiality and temporality within constellations of object and activity, opening a field in which multiple (and particular) experiential events may occur. Informed by studies in philosophy and choreography, viewing is understood as a temporal and spatial activity; observation and thought is an unfolding process that is always moving. Grogan applies expanded choreographic systems and strategies to works presented predominantly within a visual arts context.

Helen Grogan’s recent solo projects include: Three Performative Structures for Slopes, Slopes, Melbourne, 2014; Specific Applications for This Space (an obituary), Place of Assembly, Melbourne International Arts Festival, 2012. Selected group exhibitions include: Framed Movements, Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne; Melbourne Now, National Gallery of Victoria International; If This Exhibition Where a Text, Slopes, Melbourne; Interpreting Variable Arrangements, KULTURHUSET, Stockholm; Shelley Lasica’s VIANNE AGAIN, MADA, Monash University, Melbourne; What Moves Us, La Mecedora Collective, Amsterdam/Mexico City; Belinner Zimmer, Kontext Festival, Berlin; South Project Space/Open Studios, Rijksakademie, Amsterdam; We Are Hidden And We Can See You, We Are Hidden And You Can See Us, Gertrude Contemporary. In addition to and as an extension of her artistic practice, Grogan has developed curatorial and research projects including: SPECIFIC IN-BETWEEN (The choreographic negotiated in six parts), Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne; Open Archive Project Space (in co-direction with Jared Davis), Melbourne; Feedback Projected (Proposals Towards an Exhibition), Gertrude Contemporary, CHOREOGRAPHY AND RELATED THINKING (in co-direction with Shelley Lasica). Grogan initially studied Philosophy and Contemporary Dance concurrently at Deakin University then The City University of New York. From 2001-2005 she continued this research at The School For New Dance Development, Amsterdam School for The Arts.