Spawn is a gift to those of us (so many of us!) who have been living through lockdowns. With the unwelcome mantle of ‘most locked-down city in the world’, Melbourne audiences were at the forefront of artist Laura Duffy’s mind when she created Spawn. Duffy mixes materials together like potions, encouraging audiences to consider texture through filmic spaces in which the natural and unnatural writhe upon one another – slipping, dripping, bubbling, congealing.
Responsive to a context of global pandemic mixed in with climate crisis, Duffy is moved by sentiments of kindness and generosity, inviting audiences into the ‘poetic, fun, fresh, flowery, camp and flirty’ world of Spawn.
The work reflects Duffy’s belief that materials are collaborative, complete with their own stories, histories and energies. The artist combines these materials to critique and shatter binary thinking of natural and unnatural as separate, instead embracing the complexity and blur of binaries. ‘How are we able to unleash from the constraints of “nature” to find new pleasures? A Post-nature embrace of all that is and will be, even if it’s toxic?’ Duffy questions.
Spawn is also a work about gratitude. A filmic study of death and transformation. As golden liquid pours over rotting, spinning fruits and flowers, Duffy encourages us to ‘say thank you and rejoice in transformation and transmutation.’
– Serena Bentley, Curator, ACMI
Our collection comprises over 40,000 moving image works, acquired and catalogued between the 1940s and early 2000s. As a result, some items may reflect outdated, offensive and possibly harmful views and opinions. ACMI is working to identify and redress such usages.
In ACMI's collection
Previously on display
6 March 2022
ACMI: Gallery 5
Single channel video, colour