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Tentaculum by Pony Express is a visual and performative response to the Wet Laboratory at the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS). Regarding the lab itself as an ecosystem, this work queers the scientific processes and actions that take place within. Pony Express occupy the existing audio-visual interface at IMAS, remodelling the lab to be global-weirding ready. The work is inspired by tentacular thinking, a term used by Donna Haraway in her latest book “Staying With The Trouble: Making Kin in the Chthulucene’, and by CSIRO’s ecosystem model Atlantis: a computer framework that simulates the marine environment and related human activities.  Both offer models of alternative systems, where different approaches to balancing resource use and cycles of energy can make space for ongoing relations to the future. 

Tentaculum opens with a durational performance in which eight humans attempt to channel the intellectual and sensory world of a cephalopod, in an adaptive embrace of the impending Chthulucene. Octopus have 8 arms, 9 brains, and 3 hearts, challenging notions of individual agency, decision making and consciousness.

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Tentaculum by Pony Express was created In Collaboration with Dr. Beth Fulton, CSIRO and the Institute of Marine and Antarctic Studies.

Performers (Hobart): Myfanwy Shepherd, Dexter Rosengrave, Lewis Allen, Tess Campbell, Georgia Lucy, Sam Mountford, Loren Kronemyer and Ian Sinclair

Curator: Kira Askaroff

Part of Welcome To The Anthropocene, a Constance ARI project made possible by the Australian Government's Regional Arts Fund, which supports the arts in regional and remote Australia. Welcome to the Anthropocene also received generous support and assistance from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), the Centre for Marine Socioecology (CMS), the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS), the Creative Exchange Institute at the University of Tasmania (CXI) and through Arts Tasmania by the Minister for the Arts.