Ms Robyn Backen

BVA (SCA) MA (UNSW)
Coordinator, Master of Studio Art

N01P - Sydney College Of The Arts - Rozelle - (Kirkbride)
The University of Sydney

Telephone +61 2 9351 1006

Website Robyn Backen

Biographical details

Robyn Backen is an interdisciplinary artist whose work makes connections between art, science and philosophy. Her installations actively engage with the spaces they inhabit, whether gallery, landscape or building: the site provides the structural and associative framework for both formal and conceptual elements. Backen has a poetic approach which includes topics such as randomness and pattern, body and language, borders and connections, distance and proximity. Backen investigates patterns of language and rhythms of nature to build works which engage with physical space.

Research interests

Backen's teaching draws upon more than 20 years of research into technology and materials. She has examined the phenomena of change in society and created artworks that often engage with the languages of communication.

Awards and honours

2011 Australia Council for the Arts: Fellowship 2012-14
2008 Australia Council for the Arts: New Work
2001 National Association of Women in Construction – Acoustic Logic Consultancy, Award for Achievement in Art in the Built Environment
2001 COFA, UNSW: Research Development,
1998 Asia Link Residency, Delhi
1997 Australia Council for the Arts: New Work
1994 Australia Council for the Arts: Professional Development
1985 Australia Council for the Arts: Project
1982 Scholarship Award Salzburg Sommeracademie
1981 Australia Council for the Arts: Overseas Study

Selected publications & creative works

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Conferences

  • Ely, D., Warner, G., Dement, L., Helyer, N., Backen, R., Paine, G., Newcombe, J., Starrs, J., Cmielewski, L. (2013). Siteworks: Ecologies and Technologies. 19th International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA 2013), Sydney: ISEA International, the Australian Network for Art & Technology, and the University of Sydney.

Original Creative Work

  • Backen, R. (2013). Bricked. In: Camouflage Cultures: surveillance, communities, aesthetics and animals. Sydney College of the Arts, the University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2013). It's me.. I'm here.. Where're you?. In: Tele Visions. Carriageworks, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2013). Night Watch. In: Night Watch. Grocon. 55 Elizabeth Street Brisbane, Brisbane, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2012). An Eye for an Eye. In: Daya/Kindness: Australia - India. India Habitat Centre and RMIT Gallery. Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centre, New Delhi, India.
  • Backen, R. (2012). Can You Hear Me?. In: TarraWarra Biennial 2012: Sonic Spheres. TarraWarra Museum of Art, Healesville, Victoria, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2012). Whisper Pitch. In: Dimension Crossing. Performance Space. Carriageworks, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2011). Exposure. In: Works in Context. Rejymre Art LAB. Rejmyre | Art LAB, Rejmyre, Sweden.
  • Backen, R. (2010). End of the line. In: The Ghost Show. Hazelhurst Regional Gallery & Arts Centre, sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2010). Robyn Backen. In: Connecting you | Robyn Backen. Canberra Contemporary Art Space Gorman House, Canberra, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2010). Sylvan - Moreshead Drive Roadside Commission Canberra. Australia: Unrealized.
  • Backen, R. (2009). A very enchanting thing 2007-2009. In: Mirror Mirror, then and now. Intitute of Modern Art. Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2009). Delicate Balance. Ballast Point, Birchgrove, Australia: Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority. Public.
  • Backen, R. (2009). Mangrove. In: City One Minute. The One Minutes Foundation and Holland Doc 24. City One Minutes URL and digital TV channel Holland DOC/VPRO, Amsterdam, Netherlands.
  • Backen, R. (2009). Walls that Whisper. In: Walls that Whisper. Museum of Australian Democracy. Old Parliament House, Canberra, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2007). 1. ATROPHY, 2006. In: Science as Art. Garvan Institute. Garvan Institute, Darlinghurst, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2007). 1. It's me 2. A Very Enchanting Thing. In: It's me… I'm here… where're you? Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2007). Whispering Trees. In: The 10th Haag Sculpture exhibition 'De Overkant/Down Under'. The Haag Sculpture. The Haag centre, The Haag, Netherlands.
  • Backen, R. (2006). A Very Enchanting Thing. In: Yours, Mine and Ours: 50 Years of ABC TV. ABC, Campbelltown Art Centre, Penrith Regional Gallery, The Lewers Bequest and Arts NSW. Campbelltown Art Centre, Penrith Regional Gallery, Campbelltown, Australia.
  • Backen, R., Hayes, T., Barnett, H. (2006). Break in Play. In: Break in Play. Chrissie Cotter Gallery, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2006). Crowning Light. Canberra Museum and Gallery foyer, Australia: Canberra Museum and Gallery. Public Art Commission.
  • Backen, R. (2006). Filtering Perception. 128 Charlotte street, Brisbane, Australia: Devine Limited, Brisbane City Council.
  • Backen, R. (2006). Sounding Towers. Queensland Art Gallery, Australia: Queensland Art Gallery. Public Art Commission.
  • Backen, R. (2005). Gesumptkunst. In: d. Afghanistan.
  • Backen, R., Tonkin, M. (2005). Vinculum. In: Vinculum. Artspace, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2004). ALSO. In: Conversion: art in public sites in Goulburn. Goulburn Regional Art Gallery. Goulburn Cemetery, Goulburn, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2004). Droplet. The Bond, 30 Hickson Road, Sydney, Australia: Lend Lease. Commercial.
  • Backen, R. (2003). Eternal Silence. In: Imagining Prometheus. Palazzo della Ragione, Milan. Palazzo della Ragione, Milan, Italy.
  • Backen, R. (2003). Lux. St Canisis, Kings Cross, Australia: Public Art Commission.
  • Backen, R. (2003). Rice Talk. In: Rice Talk. Echigo-Tsumari Triennial 2003. Uwayu, Matsunoyama, Japan.
  • Backen, R. (2002). SSO Calling all …this is our last cry before our eternal silence. In: The First 20 Years. Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Paddington, NSW, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2002). The Building that Speaks. Brisbane Powerhouse Arts, Australia: Brisbane City Council. Public Art Commission.
  • Backen, R., Attenbrow, V., Carson-Ewarthe, B. (2001). 1. Drop 2. X-ray wall 3. Sydney Waters Map 4. Projection 5. Underwater Soundscape 6. 5 Periscopes. In: Catching…the harbour. The Australian Museum, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2001). Banner Project. UNSPECIFIED: Public Art Commission.

Live Performances

  • Backen, R., Dalziel, A., Hobbs, I., Mackenzie, N., Xen, M., Zinn, C. (2012). Last Word 2012. Siteworks 2012: Future Food Feast. Bundanon, Bundanon, Shoalhaven, Australia: Bundanon Trust.
  • Backen, R. (2011). Last word 2011. Siteworks 2011. Bundanon Residency, Bundanon, NSW, Australia: Bundanon Trust.
  • Backen, R. (2010). Last word. Siteworks. Bundanon Residency, Shoalhaven, Australia, Australia: Bundanon Trust.

2013

  • Backen, R. (2013). Bricked. In: Camouflage Cultures: surveillance, communities, aesthetics and animals. Sydney College of the Arts, the University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2013). It's me.. I'm here.. Where're you?. In: Tele Visions. Carriageworks, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2013). Night Watch. In: Night Watch. Grocon. 55 Elizabeth Street Brisbane, Brisbane, Australia.
  • Ely, D., Warner, G., Dement, L., Helyer, N., Backen, R., Paine, G., Newcombe, J., Starrs, J., Cmielewski, L. (2013). Siteworks: Ecologies and Technologies. 19th International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA 2013), Sydney: ISEA International, the Australian Network for Art & Technology, and the University of Sydney.

2012

  • Backen, R. (2012). An Eye for an Eye. In: Daya/Kindness: Australia - India. India Habitat Centre and RMIT Gallery. Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centre, New Delhi, India.
  • Backen, R. (2012). Can You Hear Me?. In: TarraWarra Biennial 2012: Sonic Spheres. TarraWarra Museum of Art, Healesville, Victoria, Australia.
  • Backen, R., Dalziel, A., Hobbs, I., Mackenzie, N., Xen, M., Zinn, C. (2012). Last Word 2012. Siteworks 2012: Future Food Feast. Bundanon, Bundanon, Shoalhaven, Australia: Bundanon Trust.
  • Backen, R. (2012). Whisper Pitch. In: Dimension Crossing. Performance Space. Carriageworks, Sydney, Australia.

2011

  • Backen, R. (2011). Exposure. In: Works in Context. Rejymre Art LAB. Rejmyre | Art LAB, Rejmyre, Sweden.
  • Backen, R. (2011). Last word 2011. Siteworks 2011. Bundanon Residency, Bundanon, NSW, Australia: Bundanon Trust.

2010

  • Backen, R. (2010). End of the line. In: The Ghost Show. Hazelhurst Regional Gallery & Arts Centre, sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2010). Last word. Siteworks. Bundanon Residency, Shoalhaven, Australia, Australia: Bundanon Trust.
  • Backen, R. (2010). Robyn Backen. In: Connecting you | Robyn Backen. Canberra Contemporary Art Space Gorman House, Canberra, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2010). Sylvan - Moreshead Drive Roadside Commission Canberra. Australia: Unrealized.

2009

  • Backen, R. (2009). A very enchanting thing 2007-2009. In: Mirror Mirror, then and now. Intitute of Modern Art. Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2009). Delicate Balance. Ballast Point, Birchgrove, Australia: Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority. Public.
  • Backen, R. (2009). Mangrove. In: City One Minute. The One Minutes Foundation and Holland Doc 24. City One Minutes URL and digital TV channel Holland DOC/VPRO, Amsterdam, Netherlands.
  • Backen, R. (2009). Walls that Whisper. In: Walls that Whisper. Museum of Australian Democracy. Old Parliament House, Canberra, Australia.

2007

  • Backen, R. (2007). 1. ATROPHY, 2006. In: Science as Art. Garvan Institute. Garvan Institute, Darlinghurst, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2007). 1. It's me 2. A Very Enchanting Thing. In: It's me… I'm here… where're you? Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2007). Whispering Trees. In: The 10th Haag Sculpture exhibition 'De Overkant/Down Under'. The Haag Sculpture. The Haag centre, The Haag, Netherlands.

2006

  • Backen, R. (2006). A Very Enchanting Thing. In: Yours, Mine and Ours: 50 Years of ABC TV. ABC, Campbelltown Art Centre, Penrith Regional Gallery, The Lewers Bequest and Arts NSW. Campbelltown Art Centre, Penrith Regional Gallery, Campbelltown, Australia.
  • Backen, R., Hayes, T., Barnett, H. (2006). Break in Play. In: Break in Play. Chrissie Cotter Gallery, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2006). Crowning Light. Canberra Museum and Gallery foyer, Australia: Canberra Museum and Gallery. Public Art Commission.
  • Backen, R. (2006). Filtering Perception. 128 Charlotte street, Brisbane, Australia: Devine Limited, Brisbane City Council.
  • Backen, R. (2006). Sounding Towers. Queensland Art Gallery, Australia: Queensland Art Gallery. Public Art Commission.

2005

  • Backen, R. (2005). Gesumptkunst. In: d. Afghanistan.
  • Backen, R., Tonkin, M. (2005). Vinculum. In: Vinculum. Artspace, Sydney, Australia.

2004

  • Backen, R. (2004). ALSO. In: Conversion: art in public sites in Goulburn. Goulburn Regional Art Gallery. Goulburn Cemetery, Goulburn, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2004). Droplet. The Bond, 30 Hickson Road, Sydney, Australia: Lend Lease. Commercial.

2003

  • Backen, R. (2003). Eternal Silence. In: Imagining Prometheus. Palazzo della Ragione, Milan. Palazzo della Ragione, Milan, Italy.
  • Backen, R. (2003). Lux. St Canisis, Kings Cross, Australia: Public Art Commission.
  • Backen, R. (2003). Rice Talk. In: Rice Talk. Echigo-Tsumari Triennial 2003. Uwayu, Matsunoyama, Japan.

2002

  • Backen, R. (2002). SSO Calling all …this is our last cry before our eternal silence. In: The First 20 Years. Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Paddington, NSW, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2002). The Building that Speaks. Brisbane Powerhouse Arts, Australia: Brisbane City Council. Public Art Commission.

2001

  • Backen, R., Attenbrow, V., Carson-Ewarthe, B. (2001). 1. Drop 2. X-ray wall 3. Sydney Waters Map 4. Projection 5. Underwater Soundscape 6. 5 Periscopes. In: Catching…the harbour. The Australian Museum, Sydney, Australia.
  • Backen, R. (2001). Banner Project. UNSPECIFIED: Public Art Commission.

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