Tessa Laird is an artist, writer and lecturer in Critical and Theoretical Studies at the Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne. Originally from Aotearoa New Zealand, Tessa has been an art critic, magazine editor, and educator, for over 20 years. Her speculative inquiry into colour A Rainbow Reader was published by Clouds in 2013, while her cultural history of bats was published in 2018 as part of Reaktion’s Animal series. She has written book chapters about contemporary art and plants, most notably “Spores from Space: Becoming the Alien,” in Covert Plants: Vegetal Consciousness and Agency in an Anthropocentric World (2018) and “Vertiginous Viriditas: for a Planthroposcene, not a Plantationocene”, in Afterstorm (2021). In 2021 she edited a special issue of Art + Australia journal with the theme "Multinaturalism", and in 2022 she curated Octopus 22 at Gertrude Contemporary: Baroquetopus: Humanimal Entanglements and Tentacular Spectaculars. She is currently working on a book, Cinemal: Animal Aesthetics in Experimental Film, for the University of Minnesota Press Art After Nature series.

Written by