Taloi Havini

Date and Time

  • Old Customs House
  • 3 - 19 Nov 2023

Date and Time

  • Old Customs House
  • 3 - 19 Nov 2023

Kastoms was a new iteration of Taloi Havini’s Answer to the Call, an immersive twenty-two speaker installation, composed in dialogue with contemporary arts practice, scientific investigation and customary wisdom.

Originally created after her residency onboard the R/V Falkor (Schmidt Ocean Institute) and premiered with the TBA21-Academy at Ocean Space, Venice (2021), this significant work was re-imagined in Australia for the first time, resounding in a series of cycles specifically for the Old Customs House in Fremantle.

An island platform sat at the centre, its shape and blue tones evoking the depth and expanse of our understanding of Oceania from the viewpoint of the artists homeland, the island of Buka, Bougainville. Listeners were absorbed into a meditative and gradual evolving soundtrack, designed by Hayley Forward. Hydrophone recordings of sea floor sonar mapping were layered with ocean chants and Indigenous instruments composed by musician’s Ben Hakalitz and Mario Celestino. Traversing beyond a scientific lens, Kastoms utilised an ancient call and response method as an invitation for all to enter a temporal space created for deep-listening and relating.

Like the ocean, Kastoms is a work of sensory depth, ancient dialogues and cultural contemporary resonance. Alongside the installation, Kastoms included an intimate live performance and in-conversation between Taloi Havini and collaborating musicians Ben Hakalitz and Mario Celestino.

Traditional Composition & Instruments: Ben Hakalitz, Mario Celestino, Past Hakö elders chants
Composition & Sound Design: Hayley Forward
Sound Engineer: Felix Abrahams
Sound Mixing: Jeremy Turner
Producer: Angela Duffy
Originally commissioned by the TBA-21 Academy at Ocean Space, Venice, 2021.

About the artist

Taloi Havini

Taloi Havini was born in Arawa, the Autonomous Region of Bougainville and currently lives and works in Sydney, Australia. Havini’s work is often a personal response to the politics of location exploring contested sites and histories connected within Oceania; employing photography, sculpture, immersive video and mixed-media installations. Working with living contemporary practitioners she is actively involved in community projects in Bougainville and Australia, such as the Women’s Wealth project exhibition. Her artwork is held in public and private collections including the Sharjah Art Foundation, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Queensland Art Gallery, Gallery of Modern Art, National Gallery of Victoria, KADIST, San Francisco, CA, USA. Taloi holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from the Canberra School of Art, Australian National University and has exhibited in Palais de Tokyo, Paris, Sharjah Biennial 13, UAE, 3rd Aichi Triennial, Nagoya, 8th & 9th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art Queensland Art Gallery, GoMA, Brisbane.

Old Customs House, Fremantle

Fremantle Customs House, Phillimore Street, Fremantle WA, Australia

Photos: Emma Daisy
Artist Portrait: Photo by Zan Wimberley. Courtesy of Artspace, Sydney.

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