Rima Zabaneh from Ardross and Berenice Rarig from Canning Vale, Western Australia (WA) were the recipients of the prestigious $10,000 WA Sculptor Scholarship in 2019, both undertaking separate travels as part of their scholarship.
Berenice Rarig participated in a seven week art residency (January 6 – March 1, 2020) at Green Olive Arts, Tétouan, Morocco. Of the opportunity, Berenice expressed, “I had just been accepted as a PhD fine arts practice led research student at Notre Dame University and the residency provided me with invaluable experiences. I used the residency as a time and place to develop my thesis and make new work for presentation. My recent practice is sited in ideas of sympoiesis (collective production) through gracious relational means with a special focus on the notion of “tenderness” as a courageous art practice posture.
The residency culminated in a collaborative performance with four Moroccan artists in Tétouan, titled “Barook” (Blessing), that was one of the highlights of the residency for the artist. “One of the most powerful elements of the performance was the participation of complete strangers in a completely new environment thus making the possibility of tenderness so much more profound and I would say miraculous”, Berenice said.
The WA Sculptor Scholarship was a joint scholarship between Berenice and her artistic collaborator, Rima Zabaneh who went to the Venice Biennale last year immersing herself in an experience that could only be defined as once in a lifetime dream for a practising artist. The trip to Venice afforded Rima the luxury of engaging with art practices from all over the world not only in the main exhibition pavilions but other venues all over the city as well. This experience fuelled her ambition to delve more into the workings of the creative mind and the drive behind contemporary artmaking processes.
Rima is currently enrolled in a Master of Fine Art by research at Notre Dame Fremantle, this creative practice-led research project investigating the emergence and generative theories in contemporary sculpture-based art practice, using the knowledge collected and the experiences gained whilst in Venice informing and kickstarting her research.
Berenice and Rima acknowledge these experiences would not have been possible without the generous contribution of the patrons of the scholarship Gavin Bunning and Julienne Penny.