Hayley West

Video Interview

Interview with artist Hayley West discussing how family and heritage informs her work. 
Videography by Liam Benson.


Residency: 01.11.2010 - 31.01.2011

Hayley West (b. Melbourne, 1971) graduated in 1998 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Sculpture) from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University. 

West’s art practice is cross-disciplinary: primarily performative with sculpture, installation and photography as complementary means of expression. Research focuses on the private/public divide, communication breakdown, journeys through un/determined routes and the exploration and exposition of memory. As a newly orphaned adult, the process of grief, mourning and what remains (the vestigial) has become a significant inquiry.

Her residencies include: Cité Internationale des Arts Paris, France (Art Gallery New South Wales Moya Dyring studio); Lost Generation Space, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; and the Hill End Artist in Residence Program, New South Wales.

Recent exhibitions include: The Space in Between Book Project, Bendigo Regional Art Gallery (2008); Bangun – Abandon Project, Lost Generation Space, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (2008); immemorial, Roommate & iCAN, Yogyakarta, Indonesia (2009); The Black Show, c3 Contemporary Artspace, Melbourne (2009); Diversion, Museum of Brisbane public art commission, Brisbane (2010); After the Gold Rush, Grant Pirrie Gallery, Sydney (2010) and Art of the Nomad, CHAN Contemporary Art Space, Darwin (2012).

West comments on her London residency:

Living and working in Bow, London for three months over the winter was one of the most reflective and challenging residencies I have participated in. Accompanied by my 810 month old baby meant that I was home-based for the majority of the time, which actually made art making quite fruitful. Being able to establish a daily routine for just the two of us, away from home duties and family life, meant I was forced to focus on my work.

In November I was invited by Jemima Brown from the group ‘Enemies of Good Art’ to be part of a discussion on radio examining the art of travelling and working with children as part of a residency. It was refreshing to be part of this discussion that I feel is not really debated so openly in Australia.

During my residency I was also able to visit my father’s family home (Norwood) and my mother’s family home (Essex). The photographic records I collated will be enormously beneficial for future works. Both my parents died some time ago, so being able to spend time with one of my aunties was profoundly rewarding.

Hayley West, After the Gold Rush , 2009. Large digital image from installation for immemorial, Yogyakarta Indonesia, 2009.

Hayley West, something I’m working on , 2010. Working photo at London residency, 2010.