A one-day forum delivered in May 2015, Convergence was a space to investigate the realities of being an independent artist in Australia – underlining independent as a positive choice and central value of artistic practice.

Through a series of keynotes, workshops, facilitated open discussions and informal social frameworks, Convergence offered a moment to focus on the strengths and possibilities of our overlapping, unaffiliated and complementary independent community.

Convergence is a model of form that unfolds by a unique framework, designed by the convenors and inspired by and aligned with ten key principles;

independence – courage – community – difference & diversity – living work
rigour & precision – disruption – quickness – sustainability –

These kind of events can often get dominated by “industry” talk, so we’re hoping to put the focus of discussion and events firmly upon artistic practice, autonomous creativity and wherever possible we’ll strive to avoid talking about money – because that’s only one way to value what we do. With our creative lives and artistic practices at the forefront of conversation, it’s a day focus upon what it is, how it is and what we want it to be.

We hope this opportunity to gather will interest people who’ve been working for years, people who are developing their first works and the gamut between. We want there to be some of the same usual faces in attendance, but also those steadfastly on the independent fringes or those who’ve not yet been extended the invitation. We want those attending to represent a variety of practice, a range of cultures and a mixture of abilities. We want this representation simply because we believe a rich cohort generates a diversity of thought and that this varied perspective is one of the central advantages we gain from independence. Please pass this invitation on to someone else that you think should attend.

And we hope this is something of an offer and a challenge to those in our wider circle of colleagues and collaborators beyond Melbourne. We’re calling this event in order to begin an autonomously convened conversation that continues in other Australian locations. A challenge to continue an independent strand of discussion, advocacy and community that feels timely to where you practice.

Read Esther Anatolitis’ response to the day here.

Convergence was conceived and convened in Melbourne by Bek Berger, Dan Koop, and Kieran Swann.

We would like to acknowledge and thank Danny Butt, Joseph Chetty, Esther Anatolitis, Dagmara Gieysztor, and Mark Wilson for their contributions. We would also like to thank ArtsHouse for their generous provision of space.

Convergence operates via an adaptable model that can be adjusted to suit different creative contexts, focuses, and communities. If you’d like to know more about the framework, or speak about coordinating an iteration of Convergence in your area, get in touch.