Smith has worked across Australia and India since 2011. At the core of her practice is an interest in collaboration and knowledge exchange in which ‘learning’ is the medium, the artwork and the education. She is fascinated by the ‘educational-turn’ in contemporary art-making and the radical changes and pedagogical shifts impacting share and shape knowledge exchange. Smith combines her educator practice with her art practice in order to consider dialogue, exchange and collaboration as critical points through which the ‘artwork’ is built. It is a relational, process-based working method that challenges the established hierarchies between art and education.
For Cementa 2022 she will collaborate with Bonnie Cowan (Theatre Maker), Ankit Mishra (Video Artist), Kandos Public School and Rachelle Connellan (Educator) in the creation of FUTURE SCHOOL.
‘FUTURE SCHOOL’ is a response to the shift from ‘traditional classroom’ to the realities introduced by COVID restrictions. It is a creative reimagining, capitalising on the fractures exposed by the pandemic. School rules have been dissolved and young people are invited to create a new ‘manifesto’ outlining their aims and with ‘principles’ mapping how they will ensure the aims are met. ‘FUTURE SCHOOL’ intends to radically transform the role of the school by building and developing young people, and questioning the function of the school within a community. Collaborators: Bonnie Cowan (theatre-maker), Ankit Mishra (cinematographer) and Kandos Public School, with special thanks to teacher Rachelle Connellan. This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body. FUTURE SCHOOL is supported by the NSW Government through Create NSW
Lleah Smith is a pedagogical practitioner. She engages in making, writing and research through her independent practice and her position as Curator, Programs and Learning at the Biennale of Sydney. Smith works with audiences of all ages to develop critically engaged and socially conscious projects. Formative learning experiences, which have significantly shaped Smith’s pedagogical approach include, FUTURE SCHOOL (2022) and Youth4CareParty (2020), alongside anti-symposium (2022) and Water Lessons (2021) for the Biennale of Sydney.