About

Proximity Festival is the first one-on-one intimate performance platform of its kind.

Based in Perth Western Australia, Proximity is a national artist platform known for commissioning unique intimate experiences for audiences of one at a time.

Each year Proximity takes over a venue in its entirety and invite artists from all disciplines to re-purpose buildings and seek out alternative uses for hidden, forgotten or negative spaces.  Curatorially the Festival considers works that are experiential, challenge the notion of the audience/performer relationship and embody a sense of creative risk-taking in experiences for an audience of one.

Twelve artists are commissioned to make new works which activate space in unanticipated ways and place the audience at the core of the experience. Since 2012 our audiences have meditated on the breath, planned their remains after death, climbed rooftops in search of love, sat behind the wheel with a learner driver, learned to twerk, discovered what memory tastes like, stargazed, re-mapped their perceptions of boarders, created the sound of the wetlands, disappeared into cinematic imagination, sex talked, and karaoked full throttle to Whitney.

Our model involves:

Lab and Mentorship
Curated artists / groups attend a two-week Lab prior to the Festival. Facilitated by the curators and guest provocatuer, the Lab aims to encourage artists to step beyond their artform comfort zones and provide a space experimentation in-situ. This is a critical part of the Proximity model and is unique in its structure; it challenges, invigorates and strengthens participants’ practices, with a core focus on participatory performance-making, site-responsiveness, intimate experiences and artistic rigor.

Festival & Performance Season
Proximity Festival runs for two weeks and involves a curated season of intimate one-on-one performances, a series of free talks with national speakers, a public masterclass and an opening event of performances by local artists. Audiences can select a program of four performances lasting 60 minutes or experience a marathon of all twelve performances around three hours.

View 2015 Festival performances Art Gallery of WA
View 2014 Festival performances Fremantle Arts Centre
View 2013 Festival performances Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts
View 2012 Festival performances The Blue Room Theatre

Proximity was co-founded in 2012 by James Berlyn, Sarah Rowbottam and Kelli McCluskey.

Personal Trainer (2014) Tanya Lee Photo: Peter Cheng