Information communication technologies provide many new and exciting opportunities for creative initiatives that promote participation, social connection and community engagement, which have positive health and wellbeing outcomes.
Social networking and the convergence of online and offline engagement are facilitating interesting collaborations between diverse players. In 2010–11, through our Technology, Arts and Social Connection (TASC) program, we supported 14 arts projects to use existing technology to develop creative ways to increase participation and social connection across Victoria.
Blaktraks Koorie Youth Program
Koorie Heritage Trust
Indigenous youth and Elders shared stories about their local urban communities and recreated the telling in digital media. Artists assisted with the development of stories that represent the changing face of Indigenous urban identities in Victoria. Short films were disseminated via mobile phones and the internet.
Wayfarer v3: Global Agents
Wayfarer Moderators on Vimeo
Student ‘urban agent’ teams from across Victoria, including those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, used pocket video cameras to create, enact and document experiences of their environment.
Identity: yours, mine, ours
Young people from Braybrook, Sunshine and the City of Hume learnt new skills using digital technology and created works that explored how ethnicity, spirituality, language and immigration have influenced identity in Australia. The works were exhibited at the Immigration Museum.
Images of Home
Primary school children from Officer, 50km south-east of Melbourne, digitally recorded and manipulated sounds that represented their concept of ‘home’. By using sounds, children saw their hometown from a different perspective.
Young people in Frankston and Mornington Peninsula used digital photography to represent their view of their community. They learnt to build a website to host the photos, and the project ended with an exhibition at Frankston Arts Centre.
PING: a remote music education project
The Song Room
Web and social networking technology provided access to music lessons for primary and secondary school children in rural areas. Face-to-face workshops were part of this project, but most of the music workshops with skilled musicians across a range of genres were delivered online.
Role models (‘torch bearers’) from Indigenous and other cultural backgrounds used hand-held ‘flip’ digital video cameras to capture stories from around 14 rural and remote neighbourhoods and made short films about their communities. The project culminates in an online film festival.
My Wonderful Everyday
Roger Alsop & Mark Themann
Sound expert Roger Alsop and Melbourne artist Mark Themann collaborated with the diverse communities of Dandenong to create a web-based spoken word work focusing on the issues of food and water in this area. Listen to the My Wonderful Everyday stories.
Burnt Out: Stories from the Ashes
Borderlands Cooperative Ltd
This project enabled Black Saturday fire-affected communities in Kinglake and surrounding areas to document and share their experiences of disaster and recovery using digital technology.
ArtPlay, City of Melbourne
'Little Houses' was an exercise in human/computer interaction to increase social connection. The project created real time 'soundscapes' and a public art installation focusing on the experiences of children and families.
RAW: ReActivate Wyndham
Wyndham City Council
Images, writing and audio produced by community members was uploaded to an interactive website to create an online ‘public art space’ for Wyndham community members to facilitate their social engagement for health.
Stories of Survival
Humanitarian Crisis Hub
Through a combination of storytelling, digital technologies and print media, this project enhanced the social connection of newly arrived refugees and immigrants in Victoria by documenting and sharing their stories of survival in war and conflict-ridden countries.
Bringing Singing to the Community
Brunswick Women’s Choir
This project involved a series of online singing workshops, including songs by Yorta Yorta songwriter Lou Bennett. The digital videos, sheet music and audio files were made available online as a resource for existing or emerging community choirs who face difficulty accessing resources due to distance or disability.
The Travelling Chair
A web/mobile phone application for people with disabilities allowed people to create personal profiles and review venues. This created an interactive social network that provided essential information on the accessibility of buildings and venues across Victoria.