SEMAPHORE is an emerging arts publishing project in the process of reflection and planning for the future.

is a series of conversations considering ideas of identity and governance, bureaucracy and power, creativity in light of regulation, the role of text to other arts, and collaborative relationships. It's a project about how creative work grows from initial ideas and personal practices, into collectives, groups, and projects larger than were originally imagined.

As part of the Fair Isle exhibition at DADAA in Fremantle, Semaphore editors Kelly Fliedner and Melissa McGrath will meet with and gather information from industry leaders, peers and community members regarding processes for supporting arts practice in WA. We will record these exchanges and publish our reflections to share the process of thinking through making and document local histories and knowledge.

We have put together six ‘coordinates’ that will guide the conversations we share with participants: ‘collaboration’, ‘function’, ‘scope’, ‘breadth’, ‘form’ and ‘representation’. You can read more about each of these coordinates below. We invite you, the audience, to also ponder these coordinates as they relate to your own guiding principles for personal action and participation in community.

Frames of Reference is a project about acknowledging and becoming.

SCOPE — We designate our remit to contemplation of art from Western Australia as a provocation to consider the role of settler colonialism in contemporary society and to challenge art’s relationship to hierarchies of power.
FUNCTION — We focus on the function of text in the presentation and consideration of artworks and art practices, with particular interest in writing that creates conversation.
BREADTH — We work with writers and artists who use the premise of responding to art as an opportunity to explore broader cultural themes.
FORM — We recognise the various forms of text and dialogue and regard the value of publishing written words, recording voices and facilitating events for sharing and learning as equal.
REPRESENTATION — We acknowledge the importance of including underrepresented perspectives within a contemporary archive. We seek to document histories and facilitate intergenerational knowledge sharing.
COLLABORATION — We acknowledge that artistic labour requires structural support and takes many forms. We embrace the intersection of roles including artist, writer, curator, designer, student, audience, administrator, producer, performer, educator and community member.


Frames of Reference (2020 - 2021)
Sempahore (Kelly Fliedner and Melissa McGrath)
conversation and writing with website and printed materials

This project has been created for the Fair Isle exhibition presented by DADAA and Perth Festival, and curated by Katherine Wilkinson.