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Filmmaker and writer Tracey Rigney announced as the AFTRS Artist-in-Residence for 2024

AFTRS welcomes filmmaker and writer Tracey Rigney, a Wotjobaluk and Ngarrindjeri woman, as the 2024 Artist-in-Residence.

The AFTRS Artist-in-Residence program invites the most talented, brilliant and creative storytellers in Australia to spend a semester with the School and have the space, support and facilities to reflect on and test their craft.

Tracey has always had a love of storytelling from her Grandfather and family. She draws inspiration from her people and culture. Tracey began her career in the theatre as a playwright with her debut play Belonging. She went on to write more plays before transitioning to film and TV. Her works include documentary and short films Endangered, Abalone, Man Real and Elders and the feature film We Are Still Here.

She directed Steven Oliver’s web series A Chance Affair and has written for TV on The Warriors. Her films have travelled nationally and internationally and have received nominations and awards. One of her career highlights is working with her co-collaborator Desiree Cross and Koorie students from Dimboola Primary School on Teacher’s Pet. This film won the 2016 FLICKERFEST FlickerUp Best Primary School Production Award and was an ATOM Award finalist. Tracey also did an industry placement with the Assistant Directing Department on Thor: Ragnarok in 2016. In 2022 Tracey wrote both Windmill Theatre’s stage play Rella and a children’s play, Someone in the Dark for Black Hole Theatre.

With more than 20 years’ experience, Tracey is ready to step into the next phase of her entrepreneurial life and create slates and opportunities through her newly formed Company, Pink Lake Creative.

Tracey is currently writing her debut feature film Everywhen, which is set on her mother’s Country.

She says: “As part of my AFTRS residency I’m aiming to further explore my mother’s language, Wergaia, through a range of creative practices including sound composition and sound design, which I love in film. I’m excited about how this experience with AFTRS might help shape my future dreaming with this project.”

“I’m also looking forward to connecting with the AFTRS community to share, listen and learn more about how I can be of service to the School, and explore opportunities to collaborate with lots of different people.”

Tracey’s residency will take place in her community, on Country. AFTRS is committed to community-led, place-based projects such as this to create work and inspire students to deepen their understanding of First Nations knowledge systems, media technologies and ways of knowing. The residency will focus on process rather than outcome, informed by an ecosystem of creative practise and learning that acknowledges that First Nations knowledge systems are dynamic, living and in constant renewal.

AFTRS CEO, Dr. Nell Greenwood, “We are delighted to welcome Tracey Rigney to AFTRS as our new Artist-in-Residence. This program creates  unique spaces for innovation and experimentation within our screen industries, which are so important for us, as we  consider who we are, the stories we tell and how we work together to tell them.  I can’t wait to see how this residency unfolds.”

AFTRS’ previous Artist in Residence was internationally-renowned VR pioneer Lynette Wallworth.