On the eve of forever

There’s the language that we speak, the language that we write and the language of the imagination. Rudolf Liebzeit.


Tonight is the eve of a full moon and the anniversary of the day my dad Rudolf Liebzeit died. He lived a life with many layers and as many or more truly amazing stories; yes he did teach Arnold Schwarzenegger to drive in Austria when they were 19. And he really was a Liebzeit (meaning lovetime), being able to see to the heart of a person, and speaking to that part. His creativity was expressed through his love of music, and the operas he’d conceive and tell me about, singing little melodies and including lighting design and feelings with a story. He expressed his compositions in complex rock work as a bricklayer and stonemason, his large hands tender to their form, sometimes finding the shape of a heart in brick and laying it facing the world. He told me:

When you love someone and are far away from them, don’t worry. They will be thinking of you each time they turn a rock.

Dad, I miss you seeing the heart of me and talking to that place. It’s lonely here without that treasure you showed me. Tomorrow I will find a rock to love.

Through the broken pieces of my family I was lucky because I learnt to trust the imagination. Here’s an impromptu video we made after a day at our haunt Jimmy Watson’s. It features music and voice recorded during a parody phase I went through after a serious car accident, I had been amusing myself at the time because I was bored having a broken neck. It sniggers at the self importance of a ‘famous’ muso I met in Berlin in my 20’s, you know when they bang on and you just roll your eyes. Now I hold all that affectionately and compassionately but back then I said to dad, ‘I have this song, I’ll film if you be the man in it, just put on this wig and beret and move your mouth’. And unflinchingly he listened to the song twice and knocked out this stellar lip sync.

This has been sitting on a hard drive for years unseen and is poor picture quality but perfect to me, especially now. I wouldn’t have thought to pop this on my site but I showed it to a friend recently who thought it was funny and poignant, so here it is. Please enjoy the world premiere of ‘The Heads’ by Anna and Rudolf Liebzeit.

Now, sashay away x


Silence to freedom

My son Ben expanding

Over the last few years I have had internet collaborations with artists (Peter Buermann, germany and John Brennand, Adelaide). Recently I have been working over the internet with fellow creative Farhad Bandesh. This collaboration is sustained despite a set of unique and complex barriers, or perhaps because of it, who knows? Would Farhad and I have met in other circumstances? Farhad is detained by the Australian Government on Manus Island, this is his 5th year there. It is a humanitarian crisis and Australia’s shame.

For those of you interested in the nuances of creative practice over the internet and phone I can say that, ‘listening’ has taken on vast and multilayered meanings and developed deep listening skills. It feels from my end that to make the most of who we are we have to listen to where we are, to each other respectfully and to inspiration. Imagine this model as a set of concentric circles resonating in different frequencies depending on the points of contact.

The collaboration is what I began to call ‘activism of the heart’ (not knowing about Marquis at the time) but instead inspired by my research in Education, Freire’s Pedagogy of the Heart and indigenous methodologies and well being. Even pursuing this collaboration is an act of decolonisation as I take who I am (an Aboriginal woman with german heritage) and centre it creatively and methodologically. I cannot make music without squinting to blur the vision and being open to what arises, it has been like that forever.

So, what arises?

Questions unfurling about creative practice; creating an embodied experience without being physically with a person, working with a growing palette of the immaterial, the role of audio in this type of collaborative work, the role of the senses in this work (which ones are perceiving the most and being the creative driver).

Thinking and feeling (the head and the heart) must be in dialogue for there to be Art and insight. Despite all this, put simply Farhad and I are friends who make music we like to make.

On the cusp of the new year I made Farhad a present, it was a recording one of his poems on an out of tune guitar with five strings that went for about 1 minute, because otherwise the data would not send. You can listen to that song here.

He liked it and encouraged a studio version of the song, and that can be heard here. I think if we were to have a motto it would be something like; if we can make it, we will.

Silence to Freedom. Lyrics: Farhad Bandesh, Recording: Anna Liebzeit

Picture is of my son Ben expanding

Far from home

Farhad Bandesh and I would like to share with you ‘Far from home’, our new work. You can support Farhad by purchasing the song through the link. For friends of mine who do not know Farhad he has been in detention on Manus Island, this is his 5th year. We have been working on audio projects and have become friends, sharing a love of music, poetry and culture. xx

You can listen to the song here: 

You can buy it to support Farhad here: Far from home link here

Down to the river link here