Tony Yap Animal/God 2021–23 (still); filmed live performance. Courtesy of the artist © Tony Ya

NGV X recess: Artist Film Program – Animal/God Tony Yap

Free entry

The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, Fed Square

Community Hall Ground Level

Tony Yap Animal/God 2021–23 (still); filmed live performance. Courtesy of the artist © Tony Ya
Past program

Co-curated with Olivia Koh from recess – a Melbourne-based online platform showcasing contemporary moving-image works – this series will comprise daily screenings in Community Hall. Featuring all Melbourne-based filmmakers, the films highlight the city’s breadth of talent in art-filmmaking – an expanding arena of creative practice with a bright future. 

Tony Yap is an accomplished dancer and multidisciplinary artist who explores and creates an individual dance-theatre language informed by psychophysical research, Asian shamanistic trance dance, butoh and ‘psycho-vocal’ experimentations.

Animal/God, 2021–23, was made in response to the death of Yap’s friend and collaborator, the Italian composer and musician Ezio Bosso. Soon after learning of Bosso’s death, Yap filmed an impromptu dance at the Abbotsford Convent in the natural light of a nearby window. Playing Bosso’s piece Unconditioned: Following a Bird (2021) on a speaker, Yap dances a tribute to his friend, a testament to their shared practice of entering into a state of trance during a performance. Describing this experience, the artist said: ‘In my state of trance I had a glimpse of a lost being following the guide of a little bird in its flight out of darkness at his last moments of life. I too followed that bird in this dance to Animal/God.’

Yap has been a distinct figure in inter-cultural discourse in Australia. He received Asialink residential grants in 2005 and 2008, as well as a Dance Fellowship from the Australia Council for the Arts, and is the founding Creative Director of Melaka Arts and Performance Festival – MAP Fest. Yap brings a non-Western perspective to the development of contemporary dance and performance practice that is grounded in Asian philosophies, sensibilities and forms.

Film credits
Animal / God (2021-2023), single channel video, HD, 6 minutes 13 seconds
© Tony Yap

General enquiries

Ph +61 3 8620 2222
9am–5pm, daily