The Purple Shall Govern: Sounds of Resistance

  • Image courtesy of Melissa Tan. The artist has applied a purple hue.
    Image courtesy of Melissa Tan. The artist has applied a purple hue.
The Purple Shall Govern: Sounds of Resistance
Event Information

The Purple Shall Govern, an exhibition and expansive public program presented by artist Roberta Joy Rich, explores the resilience of people during Apartheid-era South Africa, alongside those living on the unceded sovereign lands of Australia. Through re-framing history and her own family narratives, Roberta hopes to shed light on how the past informs our experiences in public spaces in the present.

A week before The Purple Shall Govern exhibition launches, join us for Sounds of Resistance, a precursory contemplative sonic experience situated in our lush outdoor Amphitheatre.

Bringing communities together to reflect on themes within Roberta Joy Rich’s exhibition, DJs Peter Abrahams, Paul Gorrie and Colette spin the sounds and rhythms that reflect a soundtrack of liberation and self-determination, playing music of people from this continent to southern Africa. Meet us at the banks of the Maribyrnong among the she-oaks and the bluestones for an introspective dance.

The exhibition will also be open to explore on the day as you immerse yourself in sound.

Date Saturday 12th February, 6 – 9pm

Presented as part of Who’s Afraid of Public Space? in collaboration with the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art.

This exhibition is generously funded by Australia Council, Creative Victoria and the Besen Foundation.

Date & Times

Saturday 12th February, 6 – 9pm




Wheelchair Accessible

Meet the Artists
  • Roberta Joy Rich
    Roberta Joy Rich

    Roberta Joy Rich is a multi-disciplinary artist who considers and responds to constructions of African identity and histories, often referencing her own diaspora southern African identity and experiences.

    Since her MFA at Monash University (2013), Rich has exhibited projects in Melbourne, interstate and South Africa including: Deny/Denial/Denied; Blak Dot Gallery, (2017), One Colour at a Time: Contemporary Screen Prints; Wits Art Museum, Johannesburg (2017), M/other Land; Arts House (2018), Transmissions; Gallery MOMO Cape Town, (2018), The Fairest Cape? An account of a Coloured; Bus Projects, (2018), Firstdraft, Sydney (2019), WE KOPPEL, WE DALA; Metro Arts and the Incinerator Art Award (2020). An alumni of Footscray Community Arts Emerging Creative Leaders Program (2017), Rich was the 2020 recipient of the Australia Council for the Arts Debra Porch Award for an upcoming residency at the Cemeti Institution for Art and Society, Yogyakarta, recently completed a Creative Development and Mentorship program supported by ACMI and the Ian Potter Cultural Trust (2021).

  • Paul Gorrie
    Paul Gorrie

    Paul Gorrie is a Gunai/Kurnai & Yorta Yorta artist, DJ and producer, harnessing a deep love for underground club sounds from around the world. His sets explore the contemporary works of Black and Brown producers in dance music, fusing hard techno with dark, sparse and bass heavy drum syncopations. 

    With an appetite for anything that makes you move, Paul’s genre bending style is truly all killer and no filler. 

    Alongside an illustrious DJ and production career, Paul has cemented himself as a mainstay in the Australian music scene through his work as a radio presenter (Good Static on Triple R), filmmaker (Young Mob Questioning Treaty), drummer (DRMNGNOW & Kee’ahn) and co-curator of the BLK ICE event series, with many new and exciting projects on the horizon. 

  • Peter Abrahams
    Peter Abrahams

    What would you call a DJ that was widely accredited as one of the pioneers of the Cape Town Deep House scene but has dusty headphones? 

    Some say that when he does play, he has irrepressible energy, technical skill and crowd mastery. He is a lover of the quick before-work mix and is incessantly updating his USB’s with all things HOUSE. 

    Born and raised in South Africa now living in Melbourne, his parents named him Peter “I get down when I play” Abrahams. 

  • Colette

    Colette is a DJ with intrinsic musical taste, derived from her Cape Town ancestry and a lifetime of involvement in the thriving hotbed that is the Melbourne music community. Her  selections traverse Funk, R&B, Hip Hop, Jazz and all shades of dance music.  

    She emerged in 2015 as the DJ Melbourne didn’t know it needed, fast becoming an  important mainstay of the local scene, regularly selecting at weekly parties Azure Nights,  Lost Weekend, Mellowdias Thump, and most recently her own the Vinyl Frontier.  

    With a passion for a get down, she first appeared at the impeccably curated Inner Varnika Festival in 2017 and secured local support roles for touring artists such as Noname, The  Internet, Mr Scruff and Throwing Shade. A couple of coveted interstitials later and a cruise in the infamous Bait Shop, good times, vibe and dance are key with bass heavy dance floor jams to smooth grooves, there’s always soul.  

    Listen to her here.


This is a past event