Through a series of newly commissioned public banners, acclaimed artist Hannah Brontë offers daily commuters a literal sign from above. Viewable across the Story Bridge and throughout Brisbane’s CBD AFFIRMATIONS DURING THE Apocalypse implores us to pause, take heart, and dream of new possibilities. As uncertainty and upheaval sweeps the world, Brontë’s timely affirmation is an invitation to step into this unknown, reminding us that ‘the world is shifting and so can you.’
"The tectonic plates are shifting and the whole world seems to be splitting, cracking and reforming. We will never go back to what was, so what do you want life to be now? Signs and affirmations during these times seem all the more poignant. How do we go gently on ourselves when there is so much work to be done! This banner is an offer to dive into the unknown, into the possible! What does it look like if everything you wanted came true? Maybe this is the sign you were looking for?
My practice has explored banner making for over a decade. The importance of placards in protest culture is what led me to explore this medium. The co-opting of protest culture is also a huge phenomenon we are now seeing, so observing this as an artist means it is an interesting time to make banner and placards. Language, colours, text: it all changes how we read the information and what we emotionally attach to it . Formation of words can spark movements, change people’s perspective, agitate, recalibrate, educate, and organise new ways of being.
This particular banner is significant as during COVID-19 the whole world has paused and cracked open. Black Lives Matter and Deaths in Custody demonstrations have swept the world, sparking the biggest civil rights movement in history, which includes public conversation around abolishing the police. If these things are happening right now when they were deemed impossible, who are you to be small during such giant times? The world is shifting and so can you."
—Hannah Brontë, 2020
AFFIRMATIONS DURING THE Apocalypse was presented across Street Talk advertising from 31 August–28 September 2020 at the following locations:
230 Brunswick St, Fortitude Valley
39 James St, Fortitude Valley
660 Main St, Kangaroo Point
280 Adelaide St, Brisbane CBD
Between 7–21 September 2020 the work will also be viewable from the Story Bridge, Kangaroo Point. Co-commissioned by Brisbane Festival.
Hannah Brontë, AFFIRMATIONS DURING THE Apocalypse, 2020, site-specific banner, 1800 x 900cm. This project was co-commissioned by Brisbane Festival. Brisbane Festival is an initiative of the Queensland Government and Brisbane City Council.
Hannah Brontë's practice draws on the natural environment, the empowerment of Indigenous, Black and Brown women projected into her dreamscape works of imagined futures. Her practice spans video, photography, weaving and textiles. She has participated in exhibitions both locally and internationally, including Transits and Returns, Vancouver Art Gallery, Canada; The National, MCA, Sydney; Perilous Bodies, Ford Foundation, New York; Pataka—revolutionary women, Porirua, NZ; Blak- Blak Art Form, Cairns Regional Gallery; Next Matriarch, Ace Open, Adelaide; and Red Green Blue : A History of Australian Video Art, Griffith University, Brisbane.