Kangaroo Island Residency

South Australian artist Cynthia Schwertsik was selected from more than 72 applicants from around Australia for the four week residency of this new partnership between Country Arts SA and Catherine Murphy.

The residency honours the creative spirit of Cath Cantlon, who produced contemporary art and sculpture in her Palace of Production (P.O.P) studio, built behind the home she shared with her partner Catherine Murphy in Emu Bay, Kangaroo Island.

Schwertsik, of Crafers, started her career in Austria as a dancer, performer and set designer. Since moving to Australia in 2012 she has gradually transformed her practice into the visual arts.  Her work has been commissioned and presented throughout Europe, Australia, South Africa and the USA. The 2018 SALA prize winning video Peri-Urban was shown at Adelaide Festival Centre, her most recent public artwork Ways of Walking was commissioned by the City of Unley for the series Arts in Your Space. Currently she is responding to the Flinders University Art Museum’s collection of Post Object Art through performance and digital work, gaining insight into Australian artistic concepts of the 1960s and 70s.

Cynthia Schwertsik is a contemporary visual and performance artist who presents art that focuses on the environment. She creates contemporary landscapes through her playful interactions with everyday objects in public spaces and places. Cynthia will spend her time exploring the displacement of furniture in the landscape, testing her footprint on the ground and talking about the impact of the human footprint on Kangaroo Island while in residence in the Palace of Production (P.O.P) studio.

“Public art is at the heart of my work, drawing installation and performative interventions are my tools. My experience as a parent, particularly the notion that motherhood is a public role, has shaped my practice. As a mother, the everyday experience and the choices I make, extend beyond my personal interest. I claim social and public spaces; I participate in the conflicts between private and public interests, both at home as well as in a political context. These negotiations have led me to develop public interventions and performances, with much of my current work set in urban, suburban environments. I am particularly interested in the slippage between the space we claim and inhabit for human consumption and the space we declare to be nature,” said Schwertsik in her application.


30. 05. 2019

Diary of Artist in Residence: Cynthia Schwertsik

Preparing for the residency in the Palace of Production (P.O.P) Studio: “This residency comes in the perfect moment, as I am full of ideas that are fed through the research at Flinders University Art Museum through February and March,” said Schwertsik. “In April I am bursting to develop new work that will be presented mid-year. […]


Merilyn de Nys


4 April - 3 May 2019




Cynthia Schwertsik


Palace of Production, Emu Bay, Kangaroo Island

About the Artist

Cynthia Schwertsik

Palace of Production Artist in Residence

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Country Arts SA recognises and respects that we are living and creating on Aboriginal Lands and we are committed to working together to honour their living cultures.