The camp, an experiment in alternate lifestyles, continues after more than 40 years with about 40 inhabitants, many of them little children. People live in all kinds of imaginary architectures, like a village in Middle Earth.
— Deborah Kelly

deborah kelly | thy-lejren

About the artist

Deborah Kelly is a Sydney-based artist whose works have been shown around Australia, and in the Singapore, Sydney and Venice Biennales. Her projects across media are concerned with lineages of representation, politics and history in public exchange.

Kelly's 2001 collaboration with Tina Fiveash, Hey, hetero! has been shown and studied extensively, and has appeared in a new Greek translation for the 2015 Biennale of Thessaloniki. She is a founding member of the boat-people artist collective, most recently included in the 2014 TarraWarra Biennial. Her work Tank Man Tango: a Tiananmen Memorial was included in Zero Tolerance at MOMA PS1, NYC, (2014 - 2015), toured to Basel Miami, and subsequently was performed in over 20 cities around the world on 4 June 2009 to mark the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests. Her MCA-commissioned work considering the rise of religiosity in the public sphere, Beware of the God, included videos in train stations, 40,000 postcards and projections onto clouds over Sydney Harbour.

Kelly’s artworks have been shown in galleries and cinemas around Australia, in London, Cologne, Weimar, Leipzig, Moscow, St Petersburg, Seoul, Paris, Rio, Zagreb, Prague, Brno, Hong Kong, Vienna, Jakarta and several US cities. 

About the partner

The Kirsten Kjær Museum is a non-profit association and a private art museum, with a large collection of drawings and paintings by Kirsten Kjær (1893 – 1985), located in the North region of Denmark.

Thy-Lejren is an alternative community, created in 1970, located two kilometers from the Museum. The intention of the ‘camp’ was to make a site for experimental living, inspired by alternative movements in the U.S during the 1960s. Today, almost half a century later, Thy-Lejren is an alternative village populated with around 70 people. 

Images: Ramesh Nithiyendran, detail, from the collaborative portrait project No Human Being Is Illegal (in all our glory) 2014- (ongoing); Still from LYING WOMEN, 2016, animated collage, 3 minutes.