INSIDE CRACK – Communication Installation

An interview with Bicky Lee

By Alex Morris @Nemiwai

“The only instruction I’m giving is to find true connection,” said 23-year-old Bicky Lee of her upcoming installation at Crack Theatre Festival.

Bicky is a performer, dancer and feminist, and she’s also the Setting the Stages Artist from Melbourne, though she’s originally from New Zealand.

She describes her installation as experimental.

“It’s really a simple idea. It’s an attempt at connecting with someone in three minutes. And I’m very open about what that means. I’m calling it Connection Timeout, and I’m not coming into it with any choreography or agenda. I honestly am just as perplexed as I imagine other people might be.”

At Crack Theatre Fest Bicky will have a space, a taped off box area, and she’ll be in the space for four hours each session, and one person will be able to enter at a time. When they step in they have three minutes to establish a connection, and then they must leave. She’s not making any plans on how to act or react; the result isn’t important. She said it’s more like a meditation – new person, new slate. An audience will be able to observe the interactions the entire time.

“I think that as human beings, connection is a kind of vital component, connection with someone else but also connection to themselves, nature, Wi-Fi… There’s constantly negotiation between self and other,” Bicky said. “I don’t think there’s a lot of thought around true or authentic genuine connection; I’m posing what that means in asking someone to try to find it with me.”

Bicky’s made a few connections since she moved over from New Zealand in 2010 when she was 17. She came to attend the Victorian College of the Arts where she studied dance and was surrounded and impressed by “amazing beautiful artists.” She’s been in Melbourne ever since.

She graduated from VCA 2012 and then began working independently. She taught with youth companies, and said yes to every opportunity. She’s worked with many artists, but she’s most known for working with James Batchelor. She was in his work “Island” which was nominated for an Australian Dance award.

Bicky wouldn’t have necessarily called herself a feminist up until a few years ago. When she was 20 she was figuring out who she was (something she’s still doing), and she had a realisation that she was a woman while putting together a piece to perform for Melbourne Short + Sweet Dance called “Man Up and Do a Solo”. The piece was a commentary on what it meant to be a woman, and how there are so many conflicting and contradictory elements involved.

“It was a seven minute dance rant – I realised there was a lot more [about feminist issues] I wanted to learn about,” Bicky said.

Since then she’s begun writing for both Australian and American feminist outlets and immersed herself in feminist literature. She’s currently saving up so she can travel, and she would love to go to NYU to study a Masters in Gender Studies.
Catch Bicky in Connection Timeout near The Amphitheatre at The Crack House, Market St, Hunter St, Newcastle CBD, on Friday 2nd, Saturday 3rd or Sunday 4th October between midday and 4pm.

Featured image from Bless The Beasts by Laura Sunmers and Maximilian for Melbourne Fringe with Bicky Lee and Geoffrey Watson.