Conversation Piece (2017)


At the beginning of his presentation, a speaker made a joke through an interpreter and after a few seconds the whole room burst into laughter. He was pleased that finally an audience had appreciated his joke. At the end of the meeting he said to the interpreter, “You know, I’ve made this joke several times in lots of different countries, but usually no one laughs. You must be a very good interpreter. I wonder how you managed to translate it?” The interpreter replied, “I simply said: he has made a joke, please laugh.”

The confrontation of language underlies so many of the problems which we can pose concerning human beings. Conversation Piece is a performed conversation in English, Boonwurrong, Auslan and French that challenges the current Australian education system and considers languages that are not heard.

Credits:
Concept & Direction NICOLA GUNN
Collaborators MEDHI KHALLOUK, LUKE KING and FAY MUIR

 
Conversation Piece was produced by Field Theory as part of Site is Set in 2016 and supported by Alliance Française Melbourne. Photography by Bryony Jackson.