Monday 07/20/20 10AM

Ensayos: Hydrofeminist METitations: Eastern Australia

Cover Image:

Caitlin Franzmann, Mangroves of Canaipa Island, Australia, 2019. digital photograph. dimensions variable. Courtesy the artist.

Ensayos: Hydrofeminist METitations Listening Series

Listen to the podcast here

As part of their digital residency at the New Museum, Ensayos practitioners will launch three podcasts. Drawing from Ensayos’s transdisciplinary practice, these podcasts will focus on waters in different archipelagic regions, including Tierra del Fuego, New York, eastern Australia, and Norway. Journalist Catalina Jaramillo guides listeners through four acts that mirror different aspects of Ensayos’s field research: fiction, fact, somatic exercise, and care ethics. Each concludes with a song.

I. July 20, 2020 Hydrofeminist METitation: Eastern Australia
A lesson in water care drawn from a “creekulum” / A speculative mystery “The Bringers of the Viral Red Dust” / A somatic exercise in “Mangrove Tuning” / A sorrowful interview with an ichthyologist / A song about tiny crustaceans and microplastics

Listen to complete series here.

II. July 27, 2020 Hydrofeminist METitation: Norway
III. August 3, 2020 Hydrofeminist METitation: The Americas

About Hydrofeminist METitations:
Gender studies scholar Astrida Neimanis coined the term “hydrofeminism” to bring together feminist, queer, and ecological sensibilities.* In her words, hydrofeminism begins “one’s ethics and politics from the realization that we are mostly made of water…refusing a separation between nature and culture, between an environment ‘out there’ and a human subject ‘in here.’”

When Ensayos collaborated with Neimanis in 2017, Camila Marambio formulated “METitation” to emphasize Ensayos’ material-somatic research that considers molecular and global relationships in the physical world.** MET is an acronym for Mechanical Electrical Transduction, a sensory mechanism through which cells convert mechanical stimuli into electro-chemical activity. MET accounts for senses of hearing, balance, and touch; hair cells in the inner ear convert the stimuli of drum vibrations, water dropping in the sink, a crashing wave, and voice into electro-chemical signals received by the brain. This transformation is the sense of hearing.

*Astrida Neimanis, “Hydrofeminism: or on Becoming a Body of Water,” in Undutiful Daughters: New Directions in Feminist Thought and Practice, ed. Henriette Dr. Gunkel, Chrysanthi Nigianni, and Fanny Dr. Soderback (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014).

**“Hydrofeminist METitaions” was first used by Ensayos to describe a live sounding experiment performed by Neimanis, Marambio, Sarita Gálvez, and Karolin Tampere and presented as part of the Liquid Architecture program, “Negative Volumes: Body Languages” held at West Space, Naarm/Melbourne, on October 14th, 2017.

The following Ensayistas contributed to Hydrofeminist METitations: Eastern Australia:

Dr. C.F. Black (Gold Coast, Australia) is an intellectual explorer and a writer. She has a Phd in Law, Griffith University, Australia. Her academic works include A Mosaic of Indigenous Legal Thought: Legendary Tales and Other Writings (Routledge, 2017) and The Land is the Source of the Law: A Dialogic Encounter with an Indigenous Jurisprudence (Routledge, 2011). Her intellectual training comes from her Australian Aboriginal ancestry and her travels throughout Native America and other Indigenous worlds. Both her research and travels have shaped her understanding of how to interact with both plant beings and other beings on the Earth in a lawful manner. She is now developing online courses to teach this knowledge to the general public. She is also an artist, photographer, author of short stories, and is now developing her skills as a playwright.

Caitlin Franzmann (Brisbane, Australia) is an artist based in Brisbane who was trained as an urban planner before completing a Bachelor of Fine Art at Queensland College of Art in 2012. Franzmann creates installations, performances, and social practice works that focus on place-based knowledge and clairsentience. Her work has been featured in exhibitions nationally and internationally, including the National Gallery of Victoria, Naarm/Melbourne, Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, and Kyoto Art Centre, among others.

Sarita Gálvez (Naarm/Melbourne, Australia) is a mother, educator, physiotherapist, and received her PhD in Education at Monash University. She is interested in land and water-based pedagogies and textile poetic thinking. She coordinates a more-than-human pedagogical program called creekulum along the Merri Merri creek on Wurundjeri country, is a founder member of Latin American feminist collective La colectiva de Abya Yala, and member of her local mutual aid group East Coburg Community Care in Naarm/Melbourne, Australia.

Lynne Van Herwerden (Magnetic Island, Australia) is an ichthyologist and Senior Lecturer at the James Cook University Centre for Sustainable Tropical Fisheries and Aquaculture. Dr. Van Herwerden engages in original research that applies genetic tools to inform conservation and management of coral reef species, based on field and/or experimental studies. She studies whales, sharks, sawfish, turtles, sea snakes, coral reef fishes, and the impacts of microplastics on coral reef organisms and their food webs.


Artist commissions at the New Museum are generously supported by the Neeson / Edlis Artist Commissions Fund.

Artist residencies are made possible, in part, by:
Laurie Wolfert
The Research & Residencies Council of the New Museum

Presentation of “Hydrofeminist METitations: Eastern Australia” has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body.

Support for New Museum Education and Public Engagement programs is provided, in part, by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Endowment support is provided by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund; the Skadden, Arps Education Programs Fund; and the William Randolph Hearst Endowed Fund for Education Programs at the New Museum.

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