Breach at Freefall 2011, Oxford Art Factory, Sydney. Photo Kat Sapera

Breach – Freefall 2011 Oxford Art Factory, Sydney. Photo Kat Sapera

Julie Vulcan is an independent Australian artist working across multiple forms.  Creative outcomes include objects, performance & installation, text & digital media, and durational & site-responsive work. She is mainly known for her durational performance works engaging a choreography of repetition. Alongside her solo practice Julie is a facilitator, collaborator and mentor.


Deep research processes underpin much of her work developed through intensive residencies, participatory laboratories and interdisciplinary exchange. Current projects are embedded in dark ecologies, relational practices, and speculative fictions as tools to imagine ongoing human and more than human worlds. The greater part of this work sits under the project banner WishingDARK. Ongoing since 2012 presentations include Night Drifts 2023, DARKpassage 2020, GoingDARK 2019,  DARKlight 2017, and DARKbody 2017. Most recently a series of works developed and/or in development followed the personal experience of a wildfire that swept through the home she shares with a multitude of critters, creatures and plants during what became known as the Australian 2019/2020 Black Summer: DARKswell 2022, #afterthefire #daybyday 2020-21, Rescript 2020 and Dark Interludes 2020(in collaboration with Michelle St Anne and Living Room Theatre). The suite of works Bloodstock 2018, I Stand In 2011-2017, RIMA 2015-16 and Drift 2014 explored ways socially constructed borders might be recognised and subsequently dismantled through matters of care. An interest in the veracity of mediated memory, formulated histories and the motivations behind how we remember, record and re-write our actions, bodies and traces – past, present and future underlie the Redress series 2009-2018, Un/disclosed 2008-09, and the Power of Constraint trilogy (Trawl – Harbour – Wend) 2007-09. In an attempt to process the larger and often overwhelming events that play out in the world, Julie manifests micro environments in which she can explore leading questions, encouraging her audience to do the same. Some of her work, subsequently, situates itself in the very personal, soliciting contributions and/or participation from the general public. This may be either directly or implicitly: as in the invitation to be present with her performances over long periods of time where repetitive actions perform a choreography from which processes of transformation and revelation emerge.


Julie equally creates alter-egos and one-off performances that engage subversive or wicked humour. Her highly stylised and visual aesthetic has appeared in urban and regional sites, theatres, galleries, windows, events, clubs, online and sometimes unexpected places.



#afterthefire #daybyday

A personal response to living on and with fire-effected land and the journey of loss, care and regeneration following the Australian summer bushfires of 2019/2020


Nurturing a DARK ecology



Rapid Pulse, Chicago 2014

Julie Vulcan has toured her work nationally and internationally both solo and as part of performance collectives. Recent work and tours include Night Drifts Carriageworks AUS 2023, DARKswell Wired Open Day 2022, Rescript Sydney Festival AUS 2021, Bloodstock Metro Arts Gallery Brisbane AUS 2018, DARKlight_I:utterings Metro Arts Brisbane AUS 2017, DARKbody Wired Open Day Muttama NSW 2017, I Stand In Taking Place MAI Montréal CANADA 2017, Deathfest Metro Arts Brisbane AUS 2016, Venice International Performance Art Week ITALY 2014, Performatorium Regina CANADA 2014 and SPILL festival of Performance London UK 2013; Drift at Festival of Live Art Melbourne and Metro Arts Brisbane AUS 2014; Redress – Rapid Pulse Festival Chicago USA 2014. Julie is one half of the exploratory lab SQUIDSILO, a duo working across physical and virtual platforms. RIMA, their most complex work to date, was presented at Arts House Melbourne 2016, End(s) of Electronic Literature Festival Bergen NORWAY 2015 and the Lock-Up Newcastle AUS 2015.

In 2014 Julie founded base-metal – a platform for performance/live art exchange, dialogue and presentation. From 2010 – 2014, Julie was the Associate Director and subsequent Artistic Director/CEO at PACT centre for emerging artists, Sydney. She directed the PACT Ensemble production Harvest 2013 and co-directed with Cat Jones Beguiled 2011 and Unsettlings 2010.

A UNSW College of Fine Arts graduate (now UNSW Art and Design), her early video installations (1988 – 92) investigated time, gender, memory and place. These works were presented in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth by the 4th and 7th Australian International Video Festival, ARX 3, Experimenta and the Performance Space Sydney amongst others. This work is currently archived at www.scanlines.net – Video Art in Australia since the 1960’s. Julie’s video installation work informed her transition into the live and performance. She has been a core member of several performance and live art collectives, including Unreasonable Adults, Frumpus and Icarus. In addition Julie has performed in Black Market with PVI Collective 2015, Finale 2007/8 with Pacitti Company UK, the Sydney Festival commission Balconies by ERTH AUS 2003 and in the video art works Dreamshelving 2011 by Sam James and A/PROXY[MATE] ENCOUNTERS 2006 by Anna Davis. She has contributed to the works of many artists including Jason Sweeney, WeiZen Ho, PVI Collective, Barbara Campbell, Deborah Pollard, Hancock & Kelly live, Leisa Shelton, Cat Jones and Panther. Julie has contributed reviews to Realtime Arts Australia and her essays and writing have appeared in a number of publications.