Zoongnosis [2022]

‘Zoongnosis’ [detail], Vahri McKenzie, Upending | Mending, May – July 2022, Belconnen Arts Centre, Canberra. Photograph by Kerry Martin.

Like the neologism that splices the Greek roots for animal, knowledge, and disease of animal origins, ‘Zoongnosis’ splices donated audio with discarded gloves and parrot wings. This COVID-safe participatory artwork invited people to send me audio recordings that reflected their ‘COVID mood’, persistent and lingering feelings they associate with the pandemic years. Bird parts and voices converge in a temporary assemblage that adopts uncomfortable, even unlawful, forms. Mending’s assumption of returning to formerly intact states is upended in this piece that stays with the trouble of damage, confusion, facts, feelings and the weird crossing-over between them. 

‘Zoongnosis’ audiovisual documentation of mixed media sculpture and digital audio installation exhibited as part of Upending | Mending at Belconnen Arts Centre, May–July 2022. Video editing by Sholto Spradbury.

Ross McLennan’s Upending | Mending work included an audio response to ‘Zoongnosis’, ‘CVC BDS’, accessed via QR code.

My thanks to the many collaborators who donated audio for this work.

This project was supported by: 

Public talks: 

  • Launch event and short talk, ‘Temporary assemblage amidst change’ 
  • FAD HDR Creative Crit special in-gallery walk & talk creative crit session