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The Secret Garden at ACCA

08 Oct 2015

The Secret Garden at ACCA Image

Surreal and ultra-sensory, the world premiere of the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art’s (ACCA) exhibition ‘The Secret Garden’ by Swedish artists Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg opens up a netherworld of strange delights and encounters.

Running from October 10 until November 22, this is the first time that Djurberg and Berg’s work will be seen in the Southern Hemisphere. In their immersive landscape, sculpture, light, sound and film mix to dazzling effect.

But don’t be fooled by its apparent benign nature. In the nooks and crannies of this psychic and hallucinatory place, the “id” runs riot with tales of trouble in paradise.

The Secret Garden features an exciting new commission, as well as a survey of the savagely humourous claymation films that first brought Djurberg and Berg into the international spotlight.

Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg live and work in Berlin. Born in Lysekil, Sweden in 1978, Nathalie received her master of fine arts from Malmo Art Academy in 2002 and won the prestigious Silver Lion for a promising young artist at the Venice Biennale in 2009.

She said the exhibition was designed to engage people’s senses through music and narrative in an effort to make them feel like they were a part of the art.

“It’s going to have a lot of contrast but I think the contrasts are a lot about life and darkness and also light and darkness in the world,” she said.

“It comes from something being a little bit pretty but also a little bit scary and we also add music and Hans has made music for every work.”

“For me that is very nice to have music in art because you become a part of the artwork. So we’re looking at it as a journey where you begin to have a distance from it and then you become more and more involved and engrossed.”

Hans Berg was born in Rattvik, Sweden in 1978 and is a musician, producer and composer, working mainly with electronic music.

Incorporating his own music as part of display, Hans said the surround sound in conjunction with the sculptures would take people on more “spaced out” journey as they travelled from room to room.

“As you go into the first room and you have some sculptures. You look down into the sculptures and there’s a video inside the sculptures and then you go into the next room,” he said.

“It’s like a narration where it goes from the one room being kind of normal to more and more abstract things. Then you go into the big room and it’s like going down in the sub-consciousness.”

A free public program will take place on Saturday, October 10, which will include a marathon screening of Nathalie and Han’s claymation short films followed by a conversation with the artists and Melbourne Festival creative associate, Louis Neri.

For more information visit

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