Siren Song is an installation, which pays tribute to Homer’s Odyssey and to its timeless appeal. The exhibition spans over 2,500 years of culture featuring Greek vases from antiquity through to an artistic re-interpretation of Odysseus’ journey using contemporary sound and composition. Its aim is to inspire curiosity in Homer’s epic poetry and introduce visitors to the story of Odysseus’s encounter with the Sirens irresistible song and the importance of voice, song and oral culture in the imagined landscape of Homer.
Behind the seductive image of the Sirens lurks a metaphor for destruction. They promise to fulfil that age-old desire that lives within us for the acquisition of wisdom, adulation and eternal happiness at any cost. Generations have been tempted to their certain doom in a thousand different stories that form the basis of powerful and enduring myths and legends, of which the Sirens form a foundation.
The exhibition contains footage from Luka Lesson’s new work, Odysseus: Live, which is supported by the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and the Hellenic Museum.
In the tradition of the ancient bards Odysseus Live retells the story of Homer’s Odyssey for a modern audience. Homeric epics have captured the imagination of generations of people, and in many ways have shaped Western storytelling. Luka Lesson and his creative team’s reinterpretation of Odysseus’ journey maintains the fundamental elements of the story while drawing new correlations to the state of flux and displacement in the world today. Odysseus: Live is an expression of the Odyssey’s continued relevance in contemporary life.
Siren Song opens at the Hellenic Museum Melbourne in conjunction with the Humanities 21 inaugural Melbourne Homer Festival on Friday 18 November 2016 and will run until mid 2017.