Underfoot: history from below | Overland

Jinghua: Part of what we wanted to do was to find the stories missing from the narrative, but I’m really resistant to the idea of heroes… I don’t want to topple one statue and put up another.

Liz: But it’s much harder to find out much about the lives of people who don’t get a statue… We had to go into our research without a predetermined idea of what the final story would be. And it’s this, I think, that’s more useful for those of us on the Left than mining the past for forebears, or new heroes: seeing its radical unfamiliarity.

Liz and I wrote a feature for Overland on Underfoot (our Footscray history multimedia project) and how everyone can make and write history. Read it here.

History Is How We Got Here | Maribyrnong Community Centre

Two friends, wearing face masks, in an industrial landscape with a river and bridge behind them.

Liz and I are running a short course at Maribyrnong Community Centre! Best of all, it’s free for participants.

Over four fortnightly workshops, develop research and storytelling skills with community historians Liz Crash and Jinghua Qian (co-creators of Underfoot, a multimedia project uncovering Footscray’s history). Participants will learn how to write, produce and share their own stories, and contribute to a visual presentation displayed at the centre. This hands-on workshop series is open to participants of all ages and skill levels. Please note: participants will need to attend all four sessions.

Thu 18 Mar, 1 Apr, 15 Apr, 29 Apr 2021
2 pm to 4 pm
Maribyrnong Community Centre
9 Randall St, Maribyrnong, Victoria 3032
free | booking required

Performance: Amplify | Arts & Culture Maribyrnong

Apologies for the super late notice but I’m doing a gig tonight! It’s part of Amplify, a series of live music and literary performances by local artists from the Western suburbs. Tonight is Tariro Mavondo, Gabriela Georges, Ruby-Rose Pivet-Marsh and me.

Mon 1 Feb 2021
doors at 6 pm, performances 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm
live in-person at Bluestone Church Arts Space, Footscray, or livestream online
tickets from $5 + booking fee | book here | more info here

Underfoot: underground histories from Footscray 3011

Finally it’s launch day!

Underfoot presents four virtual audio tours through Footscray’s past. Liz and I bring an intimate lens to local history as we wander the streets and the archives looking for people like us: queers, migrants, radicals and artists. There are some big conversations about capitalism, nationalism and settler nativism, as well as some finely aged gossip.

Each track comes with a map, transcript, photos and notes so you can either explore these places in real life (observing social distancing!) or just enjoy the stories while staying home. You can even dive into some historical research yourself if you’re so inclined.

Here it is: Underfoot.