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Till We Have Faces

A sculptural installation by Sally Spencer with a dance performance by Kim Pen Pang to a soundtrack of flute music composed by Laura Chislett.


The Brolga Cranes were dancing when she arrived in Townsville and used their dance as the theme for this installation; they are a native of North Queensland and the Townsville area inhabiting swamp and marshland areas.

Dance was used as part of the installation, seeing a dancer as a piece of kinetic sculpture and attempting to use the dancer as an extension and integral part of the sculptures. She was aware that dance can be seen as the creative energy of the transformation of space and time.

In the making of the installation Sally also explored the universal iconography of the crane, its repeated identification as a messenger between heaven and earth, and its symbolism through the mythologies of Australia, Greece, Ireland and China.


In Aboriginal mythology the Brolga Crane was originally a dancing girl who was so accomplished that she was coveted by the Willy Willy men. One day they kidnapped her and carried her away with their whirlwind to their home in a far away place. The girl, transformed into the Brolga Crane, returned to visit her tribe.

Kim's sensitive creative response gave an added dimension to the installation:

an important lyrical dimension which gave a fullness to the work.

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