- Operations Director: Madelynne Cornish
- Artistic Director: Philip Samartzis
- Design + Development: Public Office
- PO Box 456, Mount Beauty, 3699,
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The Bogong Centre for Sound Culture is a remote-regional cultural initiative situated in the foothills of Victoria’s Alpine National Park. Established by Philip Samartzis and Madelynne Cornish the Centre supports projects focusing on the processes and impacts of sustainable energy production; effects of climate change in wilderness areas; ethnographic studies of remote communities; the chronicling of vanishing industrial procedures; and systems of representation used to render natural and built environments.
Additionally, the BCSC facilitates a broad cultural program comprising, festivals, exhibitions, publications, master classes and artists’ talks focusing on site-specific art practices. These programs establish a connection with place, its inhabitants, geographic space and memory. They engage a wide range of audiences, bringing together local, interstate and international artists across multiple disciplines and fields to realise ambitious works.
The BCSC is situated at the newly restored old school at Bogong Alpine Village located 350 kilometres from Melbourne in North East Victoria.
About Bogong Village
Bogong Alpine Village is 325 kilometres North-East of Melbourne situated at an altitude of 800 meters in the Alpine National Park between Mount Beauty and Falls Creek. The village was established in the late 1930s to service the first hydroelectric scheme in mainland Australia. More recently it has become a popular site for alpine sports, recreation and ecotourism. Click here for directions.
A Short History
Work on the Kiewa Scheme commenced in 1938 with the construction of a road from Tawonga to the High Plains. Previously the only access was by foot or horseback along tracks that had been forged by cattlemen of a bygone era. Bogong Village was established once the road from Junction Camp was trafficable (March 1939); this paved the way for the construction of permanent buildings. Prior to that life was tough; large canvas tents and flies were used for sleeping quarters and smaller tents were set up to house the kitchens. By 1940 Bogong Township had grown considerably with a general store, staff offices, recreational mess, police station, and a variety of accommodation such as single men’s quarters and residences for married staff and families.
Bogong State School
In 1941 the Primary School at Bogong Village enrolled its first intake of students comprising nine pupils. Initially the school consisted of a large classroom, storeroom and boys and girls toilets. Extensions were carried out in 1944, which expanded the capabilities of the school. A library, storeroom, pupil’s lunchroom and shelter shed were added and rock gardens were established. By 1947 the number of students had grown to 46 all of whom were children of local SEC workers. Over the years class sizes fluctuated and the building remained unchanged. In 1980 it ceased to operate as a school and sat idle, eventually falling into disrepair. In 2004 it was sold along with many other buildings in the village.
Madelynne Cornish and Philip Samartzis bought the Old School and set about restoring it to its former glory. The rotting weatherboards and floorboards, smashed windows and flaking paint are now a distant memory. The newly refurbished building occupies it’s original footprint and bares a strong resemblance to it’s former self. Although the internals have been modernized remnants of it’s past history remain. The Old School once played a significant role in the fabric of village life. It inspired the community and helped shape the minds of those who studied there. It is our intention as custodians that the School once again functions as a place of inspiration.
- Reference: Kiewa Kids School Days at Bogong & Mount Beauty by Graham Gardner
- ISBN 0-646-36226-7. Published 1998
- Soundscapes In Nature With Curious Creators
- Super Field Exhibition
- Current Counihan Gallery
- The Ecology Of Place
- Sonic Interventions
- Bogong Electric
- Topography Of Dreams
Madelynne Cornish is an audiovisual artist and curator. She documents the effects of climate on natural and constructed environments, and the dynamics informing remote communities. Cornish’s work employs duration, landscape and stillness as a means of responding to the temporal and spatial morphology of place. Her multi-layered artworks are reflections of how humans engage with and shape their environment. In addition to her practice, Madelynne is the co-founder and director of operations for the Bogong Centre for Sound Culture, an independent arts initiative that facilitates cultural projects investigating the history and ecology of the Australian Alps.
In 2019 and 2017, Madelynne undertook the Serlachius Museum and Mänttä Art Festival artist residency, in Finland where she produced two projects Muted Landscape  and Densities . Muted Landscape investigated Mänttä's lakes and manufactured forested landscape which conceals an assorted range of industries used to exploit them. Muted Landscape was exhibited as a single-channel audiovisual installation at the Brunswick Street Gallery in Fitzroy in 2020. Densities used moving image, sound and anthropological research to examine the processes and impacts of the logging industry from a social, and environmental perspective. The project was presented as a nine-channel installation in the Super Field exhibition at RMIT Design Hub Gallery, Carlton in 2018. In 2014 she was an artist-in-residence at the Vancouver Art Centre in Albany, Western Australia where she produced a project titled WIND focusing on the use and impact of wind farms in the region. In 2013 Madelynne was commissioned by the Liquid Architecture Festival of Sound Art to produce a series of sound recordings of the effects of weather on the city of Melbourne for their Sonic City Festival. Between 2010 and 2012 she undertook a three-year study in collaboration with Philip Samartzis of indigenous settlements in The Kimberley region of Western Australia through TURA’s remote regional residency program, documenting the social and environmental conditions affecting remote communities. Outcomes from this project have been presented at Fremantle Art Centre (2012), and the South African National Museum in Cape Town (2010)
Madelynne is the co-founder and director of operations for the Bogong Centre for Sound Culture, an independent arts initiative that facilitates cultural projects investigating the history and ecology of the Australian Alps. She is the co-curator of Super Field (2017/18), The Ecology of Place (2017) Current (2017/2015), Sonic Interventions (2016), an international sound art exhibition presented in Vienna. Bogong ELECTRIC (2013) and Bogong AIR (2011) site-specific festivals.
For Full CV Click Here