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Supernature

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Garry Stewart’s latest major work, Supernature, had its successful World Premiere at the 2021 Adelaide Festival, in association with the Adelaide Festival and Adelaide Festival Centre. Hailed by critics as “an ambitious and innovative exploration of what the future might hold for humanity” (Alison Flett, InDaily), Supernature references ideas on transhumanism as a springboard into new mythologies on the potential future of our species. In this work, Garry Stewart decentres the stability of the Vitruvian man and our understanding of what is meant by the term ‘human’ by collapsing the divide between the anthropomorphic and zoomorphic. In the age of the Anthropocene, Supernature manifests as a surreal and awe-inspiring depiction of the relationship between humans and the natural world.

The work suggests concepts in relation to interspecies hybridity, metamorphosis, fecundity, reproduction, decrepitude, mutations and the processes of evolution. It raises questions about fundamental aspects of our existence – our artificiality, our ‘animalness’, and our relationship with the environment, blurring the boundaries between the real and the surreal. 

Eschewing dystopian depictions of nature, the overarching tone of Supernature is one of awe and wonder. It reflects on the unceasing and audacious creativity of nature. Through conjuring an otherworldly space, the stage becomes a site for the playing out of contemporary mythologies in relation to the evolution of the human body and the natural world. 

Acclaimed by Broadway World as “an extraordinary piece of work, utterly flawless in its conception and execution, Supernature was co-commissioned with the generous assistance of the Art Gallery of South Australia for the 2020 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art,and was supported by Creative Partnerships Australia through Plus1, Jane McMahon, Nunn Dimos Foundation, Sarah Rohrsheim, and ADT’s Super Circle and Super Supporters. ADT also acknowledges the support of the Jacob’s Pillow residency programme, Pillow Lab, in the development of Supernature.