For Want of a Better Word

Art Spaces Activation Partnership Funding :: support material

:: AIR CAMP ::

An other-worldly installation for conversation between adults and children.

A circle of colourful interconnected tents sits in a large open space. Each tent is filled with air and has a strange inflatable message sculpture sprouting from its roof, like placards, conversation starters. You are invited into the otherworldly inner circle and, if you are a child, your job is to decide on a subject you care about, choose a message sculpture to represent it, zip the sculpture onto a tent of your choice, watch it inflate, and then crawl inside. If you are on the outside, your job is to be the ‘conversationalist’ –  to talk to the tents, ask questions and begin a dialogue of any length. The child inside has a microphone and a whole lot of uninhibited stuff to say.

Air Camp is a new way to create a public ‘conversation circle’ where children are unseen and empowered to speak their mind to strangers from the comfort of their own tent. As visitors walk through the camp of tents, with their magically lit-up ideas attached, they can literally see what kids’ thought are. The project is both installation and live workshop designed for festivals, large gallery foyers and public spaces.

In Air Camp children are encouraged to bring up ‘things’ they feel passionate about and deem worthy of greater attention. By intentionally using the not-specific term 'things,' Memetica encourages children to explore any subject that sparks their interest, without being constrained by societal perceptions of importance, whether it's an issue or a virtue.
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Memetica’s engagement activities for children

Air Play brings the relatively simple process of making inflatables to children, along with various other areas of creative exploration including writing text onto inflatable architecture, understanding basic physics and playfully engaging with simple and safe 12 volts circuitry to operate and test their creations

Children and their parents or guardians are invited to bring any surplus of unused plastic bags they might have in their home and transform them in amusing sculptures.



The Reeflings Explorations provide an exciting and exhilarating experience for children aged 9 to 12. These lightweight, full-body puppets are crafted from materials recycled from discarded tents and are inflatable.


The Reeflings’ Explorations! workshop offers children aged 9 to 12 to join a playful one-hour workshop, where they can immerse themselves in the fantasy world of the Reeflings. During this session, kids will have the chance to explore the magic of wearing the costumes, delve into the captivating stories and characters of the Reeflings, and gain confidence in performing for an audience. It’s a wonderful opportunity for young minds to step into a fantastical narrative and bring it to life.

 After an engaging training and rehearsal, the children are ready to perform among the audience, who always react with amazement and joy to these colorful, fun, curious, and investigative creatures.

Along with the thrill of interacting with the crowd anonymously, performing with the Reeflings instills confidence, a sense of pride, and a responsibility to act as a team in the children.

Find out more about the Reeflings

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Memetica has extensive and international expertise in delivering captivating roving shows featuring giant puppets, designed to entertain and astonish audiences of diverse cultures. It also specializes in community-based workshops, offering immersive experiences for all generations or specifically tailored for children, that foster their creative and performative abilities.

The impact of the Memetica’s experience extends beyond the public presentation of the artwork created during the workshops, leaving a lasting social and cultural resonance within the community.

Embracing the natural flow of the memetic process of culture, which involves replication, inheritance, and variation, Memetica’s process relies on the belief that everyone possesses the ability to create original works of art. Artistic languages serve as a medium for people of all ages to effortlessly express their thoughts, emotions, and convey their messages to the wider world. Whether rooted in traditions, personal experiences, or imaginative fictions, artistic expression enables captivating storytelling.

Memetica’s projects actively promote and encourage spontaneity, even among those unfamiliar with art production, as guided intention surpasses the need for prior experience. Through this approach, the ordinary can be transformed into evocative and impactful artwork.

:: Giant puppets Community Workshops ::

:: The Naming

Memetica’s cultural intervention by means of giant puppetry is epitomized by The Naming, a collaboration with Australian First Nation Elder Laurie Padmore of the Dulgubarra Ydinji clan. This project seamlessly blends visually striking performance, linguistic proficiency, and cultural wisdom.

The Naming Project has effectively raised awareness about traditional culture and its importance to Yungaburra and beyond. This demonstrates how large-scale spectacles with meaningful content can attract significant attention through the playful, non-confrontational presence of giants. In this instance, the project has garnered national attention through television broadcasting.

:: Deadly Totems

The following video clip illustrates the process of Memetica’s community-based workshops. Deadly Totems has been realized in collaboration with the Willum Warrain Aboriginal Association in Hastings, Victoria. The show portrays the inspiring tale of how the association rescued their land from industrial destruction, transforming it into a revitalized natural area that now thrives with native plants and animals.

:: Street Roving and Performance Training ::

Memetica’s roving street performances bring surrealism and unexpected laughter to outdoor events, entertaining and amazing people of all ages. With mischievous Wild Birds and snooping Street Skeeters, these performances offer a delightful experience. Festivals and events can also opt for training workshops, providing a life-changing opportunity for their audience and community. Memetica can conduct training sessions for individuals selected by the festival, teaching them how to operate its giant creatures. These trainees will then enjoy the thrilling experience to perform in roving gigs at the festival.
Such experience is also available for manual wheelchair users with the uniquely designed Street Skeeters, and for children 9yo+ with the inflatable puppet Reeflings.

:: Wild Birds

:: Street Skeeters

Created in collaboration with Wheelchair Rugby Paralympic Champion Matt Lewis, the Street Skeeters have been designed for full and comfortable access for manual wheelchair user. The Skeeters are also available for the training and perform session with community members.
Find out more about Street Skeeters

:: The Reeflings

The Reeflings emerge as a mutated species, originating from reefs across the world’s oceans. Among them are those who are newly acquainted with land, while others are born here, carrying on their legacy in the wake of the reefs’ decline. These resilient creatures embody optimism as they navigate a life devoid of a familiar home or seek refuge from their original habitats. Their ultimate quest is to find a place to call home, establish thriving communities, and coexist harmoniously with other living organisms. Their narrative weaves a tale of escape, survival, arrival, transformation, joy, hope, and the remarkable ability to adapt to new environments.

:: The Reeflings Explorations!
Children can now enjoy the excitement of performing in public spaces with the Reeflings puppets. Under Memetica’s guidance, they can train for one hour, don the costumes, and mingle among the festival crowd, bringing joy to the the onlooking audience and more importantly to the young first time performers of giant puppets.

Age 9-12 years old

:: SCRAPS – Art Making with a Sprinkle of Culture
Scraps is a playful take on art-making workshops with a sprinkle of language trimmings on top.
You will create mesmerizing puppet costumes, with a little cultural twist…
Participants to Scraps will create inflatable costume puppets from salvaged materials.
The unique twist: they do so under the guidance of mother toungue Italian (and English) speaking artists and facilitators, who will mostly use Italian instruction only! Are you game?

:: Participatory Inflatable Installations ::


:: Lac Long Quan

:: Tendon