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Duck Lake: an anti-duck-shooting, art-meets-activism event

  • Deakin Downtown 12/727 Collins Street Melbourne, VIC, 3000 Australia (map)

The Deakin Critical Animal Studies Network is pleased to announce our next public lecture, 'Duck Lake: an anti-duck-shooting, art-meets-activism event' by Dr Yvette Watt. Vegan afternoon tea will be provided.


On March 5, 2016, just before dawn, an art-meets-activism event unfolded at Moulting Lagoon on the east coast of Tasmania at the opening of the duck shooting season.Duck Lake was the brainchild of artist and animal activist (and academic), Yvette Watt (and involved a troupe of dancers in hot pink tutus and hard hats performing on a floating stage to music from Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake.

Designed to both draw attention to the duck shooting issue in view of ending it, to deter the ducks from the shooters guns, and to draw attention to the issue in the media this project was the culmination of a year’s planning and preparation and was the result of a large team of people coming together to make the event a reality.

Paying attention to issue around gender, visibility/invisibility, the role of the artist as activist, I will discuss the outcomes and the complexities of bringing Duck Lake to fruition, as well as reflecting on the project and its effects 3 years later.

Speaker bio: 

Dr Yvette Watt is Studio Head of Painting at the  School of Creative Arts and Media at the University of Tasmania, and Lead Researcher of the College of Arts, Law and Education Animal Studies Research Group. Yvette was a founding member of the Australasian Animal Studies Association and is a current committee member of Minding Animals International.

Yvette has a background in animal advocacy and her artwork and academic research is heavily informed by her activism and her interest in the changing nature of human-animal relations. Her research also reflects an interest in the relationship between how nonhuman animals are used and depicted in the visual arts and what this might have to say about how these animals are thought about and treated. Related to this is an interest in the role that art can play in engaging the viewer with social and/or political issues.

Event image courtesy of Michelle Powell.