James Batchelor and Collaborators


Presented by Vitalstatistix

A journey through art and science into the unknown.

Combining dance, sound and installation, Deepspace is a mesmerising, intimate performance that examines our curiosity for the unknown. Playing at the intersection of art and science, the body is taken to the extremities of remoteness and proximity, connectedness and isolation, certainty and uncertainty.

In 2016 James Batchelor was invited to be official voyage artists on a 2-month expedition at sea studying remote islands in the sub-Antarctic. This expedition led by the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies in Australia took place on Australia’s Marine National Facility the RV Investigator, a state of the art marine research vessel. It journeyed to the UNESCO World Heritage Heard and McDonald Islands, with the purpose of studying submarine volcanoes and their relationship to the Earth’s biosphere.

As a choreographer this was a particularly unique and inspiring environment to study and research the body. It was a highly challenging space, taking me well outside my normal modes of practice. It required me to be profoundly patient and observant; to question what is ‘work’ and when does ‘work’ happen? The extreme isolation, confinement and repetitiveness of my daily experience required a profoundly different approach to space and time. For the duration of the two-month journey, ‘work’ was occurring at every moment. On a constantly moving platform in the world’s roughest ocean, simply searching for stillness and stability was ‘work’. From this unfamiliarity, I developed a particular sensitivity to the body. Starting from sensation, the body became a heightened arrival and departure point for information.’

Presented as a dance work, a film, and a sculptural exhibition by previously Port Adelaide-based artist Annalise Rees, Deepspace is a beautiful addition to Vitalstatistix’s Climate Century public program in its final year.

Creative Team

Creative team: James Batchelor (concept/choreographer/performer), Amber McCartney (performer), Annalise Rees (visual artist), Morgan Hickinbotham (sound design), Bek Berger (producer).


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Deepspace has been supported by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body, the ACT Government through Screen ACT and the City of Melbourne through Arts House. Deepspace was developed through Arts House’s CultureLAB with the assistance of Creative Victoria.

Project Dates

15 – 18 November
Hart’s Mill, Port Adelaide
Presented as an addition to Climate Century