Artsbox Residencies 2017

Resident artists are often present at various times throughout the week, so why not pop by and see what they’re up to?


wit incorporated

3 to 31 January

wit incorporated is an ensemble of actors and theatre-makers, based in Footscray. In 2017, we’re presenting an entire season of works by women. That means every writer, director and actor involved identifies as a woman. We’re also committing to diversity on stage, so the actors you see in every wit show will have the same diversity of culture, sexuality, physicality and socioeconomic background as the community in which they are performed.

Our second season for the year is the brand-new play, A Scandal in the Weimar, by Jennifer Piper and Claire Bowen, in which Lady Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Jean Watson travel to Berlin and face off against the Nazis. The centrepiece of this work will be a song in the style of the German-Jewish Kabarettisten of the late 1930s. During our residency, we will collaborate with a group of invited cabaret and theatre artists to create this new piece. We’ll also take time out to workshop our script, talk about costuming, and generally get ourselves into a 1930s mood.

Come along and join in the conversation, watch how theatre-makers come up with the stories you love watching, maybe even be in the room when we come up with the great idea that brings it all together. You can check on the schedule via and visit our Facebook Page for updates



Elizabeth West

1 to 14 February

Elizabeth West is a multidisciplinary artist whose practice is process oriented, spanning various modes of image and object production. Her object practice has grown from collecting and transforming discarded urban ephemera. Elizabeth has created a number of large scale temporary public art installations with woven salvaged plastics.

For her residency in the Artsbox she will be engaging with the local area to collect plastics and create a series of experimental pieces with weaving, knitting and knotting. Transforming salvaged plastics reflects on the intricacy and scale with which they are woven into our daily lives.



ArtLife Participants – Footscray Community Arts Centre

15 February to 14 March

ArtLife has been running for over 20 years and engages artists with disability in collaborations with professional artist-tutors to make new work, build capacity and change perceptions. We facilitate these opportunities through visual art, performance, music, sound art, digital media, animation, horticulture, hospitality, photography and movement. These arts activities are combined with the development of life skills in areas such as communication, health and general self-development. Participants are taught by highly skilled artists and have an opportunity to take part in some of Footscray Community Arts Centre’s major projects, working with professional artists and local community groups.

The ArtLife program is hugely productive and has spawned a suite of creative ensembles including resident band The Hackkets, sonic art ensemble The Amplified Elephants, and performance outfit The Chaotic Order, as well as exhibitions and events. The program’s participants are looking forward to their residency in Artsbox.



Chantelle Petith

15 to 29 March

Chantelle is a local artist creating artworks which delve into the feminine psyche and play with ideas of strength and beauty. She draws and paints the faces of idealistic women seen in advertising and popular culture. Her portraits explore female features layered with colour, texture, pattern and symbolism. Chantelle has been a professional visual arts teacher for over ten years. She takes great pride in her ability to engage others with her love of making and enjoying art. She is also a new mum and would love to discuss the issue of juggling one’s artistic pursuits with family commitments to anyone who will listen.

During her residency, Chantelle aims to produce a series of artworks including drawings and paintings. She will use drawing and digital media to create small designs and also spend time painting in oils as a culmination of her studies. A major theme of her current artworks explores the idea of femininity and beauty in a postmodern world. The concept of perfection is then interwoven with observations from her everyday life as a wife, mother and artist. More from this artist can be seen at



Stefanie Robinson

31 March to 28 April

Stefanie Robinson is a local artist practicing in sculpture, dance, theatre-making, puppetry, and community arts. Recently these different media have begun to intertwine, to create engaging immersive installations. At Artsbox she will continue her exploration of clay and rope, discovering new ways they can interrelate. Stefanie will invite visitors to make a pinch pot from clay and to share their clay stories. These pots and stories will be woven into an installation that will emerge over the four weeks of the residency. Find out more at



West Writers – Footscray Community Arts Centre

8 to 29 May

West Writers Group is a collective of writers from diverse backgrounds who currently live, work or have other established links to Melbourne’s west. It is a collective that will amplify the stories and voices of the region. In developing the many individual stories from writers from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, WWG aims to create and profile a unique ecosystem of diverse narratives. The unique two year program run through Footscray Community Arts Centre, offers aspiring writers, theatre makers, storytellers and poets the opportunity to share and create work, as well a participate in a series of professional development opportunities with mentors from Melbourne’s thriving literary community.



Serene Lau

1 to 29 June

Serene Lau is a Melbourne based illustrator and this is her first artist residency experience. The art she makes are visual questions on how humans readily shape their natural environment. Colour pencils, ink, digital media and animal parts are her main mediums of choice. She enjoys harvesting the animal parts and makes sure that they are an invasive species that has been well… dead for a while. She also likes drawing comics about her camping adventures that she does in the wilds of Melburnian suburbia.

During her Artsbox Residency, Serene will be testing an idea that involves community interaction to create a female portrait that represents the essence of Maribyrnong titled Sewer Princess Maribyrnong. She is particularly interested in how the local community perceive their cultural heritage, their past and present views on how pollution affected their lives and their relationship to their local creeks and rivers. She hopes to repeat this process with major Melbourne councils to create a “sewer princess” for each one and do a solo show titled the sewer princesses of Melbourne.



Lee Bethel

30 June to 28 July

Lee Bethel is a Sydney based contemporary artist whose work draws attention to the natural world by using materials foraged from the environment. Her ‘Forage’ project began in 2010 during a residency in Hill End, North West NSW and has continued across various sites, examining the relationship of a plant’s history with the colonisation of the land. Her foraging examines the often overlooked and subtle aspects of the world we live in. The residency at Artsbox will examine these relationships in an urban city landscape. During the residency Lee will invite participants to forage with her around the Artsbox location, along with conducting workshops and open studio visits.

Lee works primarily with paper, the collected natural material punctuating her delicate paper forms, the sorting, classifying and ordering of the material in stark contrast to nature’s random scattering. Lee has demonstrated an ongoing commitment to her arts practice through artist residencies, solo and group shows and participation in award exhibitions. The works from the Artsbox residency will be shown in her next solo exhibition in November 2017. She is represented by The Egg and Dart Gallery in Thirroul NSW.



Christine McFetridge and Mike Read

1 to 31 August

For the August residency at Artsbox, Christine McFetridge and Mike Read will be exploring the relationship between photography, empathy, and community. They are providing a free series of photography workshops for up to ten participants, which will result in the production of photographs for exhibition at VU at MetroWest in September. Throughout the four-week residency period, this collaborative and participatory photography project invites members of the Footscray community to be both artist and audience; documenting their day-to-day experiences and engaging with the lives of those around them. In this way, the project emphasises belonging and compassion by encouraging interactions and understanding between different groups.

Christine and Mike are Melbourne-based social documentary photographers and writers. They are expanding their practices to research, through collaboration with others, whether the act of photographing in a social context has the ability to enhance or restore the sense of community felt in a specific place. They have exhibited their work locally and internationally, and were the recipients of an artist residency with Wyndham City Council in 2016.


Clare Walton

1 to 28 September

Clare Walton is a Melbourne based artist who works across the community and public art sectors.  Her work explores the realms of public space within the context of a child led participatory approach.  Through the lens of her camera Clare captures the beauty of a child’s work, and reimagines it across a variety of mediums including sculpture, installation and video. 

Her work questions a child’s right to be an active citizen in the creation of their environment whilst celebrating their unique views of the world.

For the Artbox Residency Clare will be inviting the children of Footscray and surrounds to collaborate on a series of child-led puppetry performances and interactive installations.  Children are also invited to join Clare in the studio to discuss their views on play and public space, create drawings and installations (using found and reclaimed objects) about what they would like to see improved, changed or added to their local public space.

The works created with the children will form the basis for a final exhibition celebrating children as active citizens in their community.



Isabella Capezio

29 September to 30 October

Isabella Capezio is an emerging photographer, visual artist, teacher and lecturer in Melbourne. She co-directed Ruffian Gallery in Footscray and is excited to reconnect with the community through an interactive photographic exhibition. The exhibition, Lalibela Dreams, centres around the myth of king Lalibela and the sacred sites in Ethiopia that are interleaved within the myth. Lalibela Dreams is an exploration into the subterranean elements of the place, both physical and metaphysical. The work shies away from scientific renderings of land, and rather acts as an interpretation of the sacred place as something in-between myth, dream and the divine.

The project aims to investigate visual narratives, encompassing both written and oral storytelling to expand cultural myths and reshape/ re-contextualise memories and myths of place. There is limited documentation surrounding the myth of Lalibela, so the project seeks to engage with the Footscray community, especially the Ethiopian diaspora, who may have a connection to this place. The project hopes to involve participants in studio portraiture and still life as well as darkroom practices of traditional photography. Members of the Footscray community will be invited to visit the exhibition and take part in making images that follow a similar line of investigation into the sacred place.



Liz Walker

1 to 30 November

Collecting, repurposing and extending the material possibilities of natural ephemera, found detritus and recycled domestic objects play a key role in a practice investigating contemporary social and environmental concerns. Liz uses an extensive range of resources gathered from around the city and rural sites to construct sculpture, assemblage, installations and ephemeral site specific responses to people, time and place. She is fascinated by the aesthetics of decay and the visual language created by the passage of time; exploiting this to magnify the underlying issues explored in her work.

In recent years’ community engagement through creative workshops and collaborative project delivery has become increasingly important to her practice and development as an artist. Liz has exhibited widely in group and solo exhibitions, undertaken public artworks, received awards, grants and residencies. During the residency Liz will work with the community to populate a wooden wall map. People passing by or visiting the library will be invited to write messages to a friend or draw a picture on a selected map segment. The individual pieces will fit together to form a colourful and fun map of the city of Maribyrnong - a message map celebrating its diversity, culture and the people who live there.



Karleng Lim

1 to 22 December

Multidisciplinary artist Karleng Lim will be exploring and celebrating the multi-ethnic and multi-cultural population of Footscray and its surrounds by engaging with the community and developing an installation that reflects diversity and cohesion. Using installation as a medium for other people to tell their stories, the idea is to get people to workshop and create small individual vignettes in small, see-through containers by collage, decorating, filling, stuffing, drawing, and/or painting within the containers. At the end of the residency, Karleng will bring the vignettes together and show them as one large piece of work. So come by for a chat and if you want, take part and tell your story!

Karleng works in installation, photography, video, sculpture and architecture. Her practice reflects her interest in examining the complexities of humanity and its relationships. Further information: