Claudia Nicholson

(Colombia, Australia 1987 – )

In collaboration with Miss L, Miss J, Miss M, Miss H, Miss V and Miss T

( – )

By your side

Not on display
Further information

By your side 2019 was co-created by artist Claudia Nicholson and six young people whose families are currently seeking asylum in Australia. Nicholson often collaborates with community groups, such as choirs and dancers, to create performances that celebrate their shared experiences.

In the work, the young people perform a dance that they choreographed with each other. They dance in pairs, with their sister or cousin, and are dressed in their own clothes with lo-fi disguises. Matching sweatshirts and sequinned dresses meet plastic superhero masks and bright green face paint. These costumes mix play and make-believe with an everyday reality – many people seeking asylum do not have their faces documented in public due to the risks they, their friends and their families may face here or back home.

By your side is a powerful expression of who these young people are, their connection to each other, and their imaginative independence. It explores the sense of belonging that comes from a connection felt between people – a deep bond that is carried across time and geography – as well as acknowledges the complexities that arise from the very concept of ‘belonging’.

Videography: Akil Ahamat and EO Gill
Editing: Akil Ahamat
Dramaturge: Sarah Rodigari
Music: Chun Yin Rainbow Chan

Time-based art
three channel digital video, colour, sound
duration: 00:03:38 min, aspect ration: 16:9
Contemporary Collection Benefactors 2020
Accession number
© Claudia Nicholson in collaboration with Miss J, Miss M, Miss H, Miss V and Miss T