Author Archives: Sarah Jane Moore

About Sarah Jane Moore

Dr Sarah Jane Moore is an independent creative artist, performer, researcher and educator with a PhD from the University of Sydney. Moore explores an art meets science approach and is an Adjunct Associate Lecturer and Oyster Artist in Residence at UNSW Sydney. Dr Moore shines a light on nature based learning and outcomes through her long term collaboration with UNSW Indigenous Scientia fellow and oyster expert Dr Laura Parker. Hosted by the School of Biological Earth and Environmental Sciences, Sarah Jane's research dialogues are story based and focus on the Baludarri or Sydney Rock Oyster. Moore's work explores nature based marine play and provides opportunities for co creation through clay and oyster shells. Moore's oyster beds build capacity and thinking and provide opportunities for marine based communities of practice to seed and grow. Moore sings, sculpts, writes, performs and grows communities of sustainable, sustaining practise.

The Impact of Receiving Womens Wellbeing Academy Small Grant Funding

Recently, newly appointed WWBA project officer Amy Kasuma invited Dr Sarah Jane Moore a series of questions which inspired her to reflect on the past few years  and the impact of the Womens Well Being Academy on her life/work and creative process

What was the impact of the funding from WWBA?

Receiving the funding was a confidence booster and enabled me to travel to the mainland and meet with my research partner Laura Parker, colleague Brendan Burns, curator Mr Jackson Mann and digital collaborator Anton Rehrl The funding was a game changer for my creative practice as it re-connected me with my support systems and enabled me to take a break from sole parent duties and focus on delivering, interacting and reflecting on my digital exhibition at the library.  The funded outreach session that I gave to International postgraduate students was both nourishing and impactful to my future practise as I enjoy presenting and performing and often regard myself as an interdisciplinary, intersectional place based performance artist. The stories and ideas that the students shared with me whilst engaging within the exhibition space on campus have been embedded and woven into the monologues of my next live theatre show Behold, Belong, Become. This live theatre story song cycle will be performed with Tasmanian musician Oliver Gathercole in 2023 in Europe on invitation from Middlesex University and Professor Jayne Osgood. School of Biotech Biomolecular Science ally, colleague and supporter Associate Professor Brendan Burns purchased one of the 6 visual art pieces from the Worlding with Oysters collection during the visit and that  had great impact. It is a piece framed in Tasmanian oak by a local Taroona based independent framer and entitled Magic Moon. I am very proud of the fact that Brendan hangs the work that we developed in real time together, in his office at UNSW. Its materiality was informed by a dialogue and conversation with Brendan, Professor Martin Van Krandonk and others during a live feed from my little house in Taroona. The blood moon speaks directly to the cycles of nature, climate change and is held in the private collection of Dr Brendan Burns and I am very proud of this acquisition and of my friendship and working relationship with Brendan.

Covid has impacted both artists and scientists in a myriad of ways, how did covid impact your life/research/work?

I relocated to lutruwita Trowunna Tasmania to care for my young children during covid.  I lived on a low income, home schooled my children and renovated an old weatherboard house in Taroona (meaning shell) overlooking timtimili minanya / River Derwent. I spent my 50th birthday stacking wood and burning a brownie made from the last packet mix on the shelf at my local supermarket.  It was a difficult time when artists, musicians and freelance independent creatives such as myself were cast adrift from our incomes and usual means of disseminating our work. Covid required me to develop different ways of working through and with digital art practise and I believe that  my work has strengthened through this time. Whilst living remote, I transformed a garden shed into a studio and made charcoal from local bushwoods, harvested clay and ground the oyster shells that Laura Parker sent me through care packages in the mail. I needed to be resourceful during this time and made all my own pigments from materials harvested within a 5 km radius of my home. I explored place and place scapes in new ways and developed fresh focus, and a new vocabulary. Curator Jackson Mann and mentor Ivan Jirasek checked in on me and my work regularly with mobile phones calls and digital meet ups and I began to acknowledge the loneliness, embrace the isolation and engage in in newly iterated hybrid digital/hand on performance art making and workshops

What have you been working on since WWBA funded you to travel from lutruwita Trowunna Tasmania during NAIDOC Week 2020

I secured a teaching contract in Art, Architecture and Design for T3 this year and moved to Bondi in order to focus on my teaching. For the past ten weeks, I have been encouraged students to connect to place through walking, weaving, listening and storying/sharing. I have been mindfully cultivating a nature based and external classroom, where face to face learning and hands on approaches to materiality are modelled.  I have been encouraging students to write poetry, develop collage, explore galleries, the Botanical Gardens, draw, paint and explore the gardens on the Paddington Campus and the outdoor learning spaces on the Kensington Campus too.  The students have visited and added their creative voices to the wall in BEES they have printed protest bags and staged a pop up exhibition in response to the work of Gordon Hookey. has been a busy time of learning new systems, navigating change and meeting and engaging with students and developing student centred, hands on and practical, collective, campus based pedagogical approaches.

The CSIRO recently funded you to share your work at the Ryde Library; tell me about this performance

I gifted the last ten copies of the 1000 copies of River Business that I had printed children’s to children during Science Week at the Library in Ryde in August. This song/story sharing presentation enabled me to in honour scientists and celebrate scientists and focus my lens on the liminal spaces and the nexus where science meets art in unexpected ways. Luke Stellar joined me at the library and shared his insights and science stories and colleague Steven Durbach showcased his own work. Working with CSIRO in this way was an important part of my professional growth and development and represented levels of professionalism that would have been impossible for me to imagine six years ago when I graduated with my PhD and gave birth to my third child.  The shift in my thinking and practise occurred when I met Indigenous Scientia Fellow Dr Laura Parker and learnt about her ground breaking work with oysters. After meeting Laura, I was a funded artist in residence in BEES through the prestigious Synapse art residency program. Funded through the  ANAT network, Synapse enabled me to focus, take time to develop work without restrictive outcomes based parameters and experiment, be curious and learn from scientists. ANAT continue to support my work through hosting my blog and I thank the network for their advocacy, support and encouragement over the years. This support plays a vital role in my cut through with industry partners in science and supports my professional networks. I love the work that they are involved in and the networks who work/play and explore in the spaces between art, technology fascinate and inspire me.

Tell me about your latest residency at the Bondi Pavilion. 

 This year, I was successful in submitting an expression of interest to be one of the 7 selected artists and collectives to work in residence at the Bondi Pavilion. Over the past three months I have written, recorded and directed a one person show entitled Behold, Belong, Become. The show navigates my oyster, river and ocean journeys and stories the last three years of living and working in remote area lutruwita Trowunna Tasmania through song, monologue and music. I am grateful for the support of the cultural team at the Bondi Pavilion for enabling me to work in the new theatre, the recording studios and the Sea Gull Room. Taking time out in a residency such as this gave me the opportunity  to ground myself, pause my research and teaching and focus on the development of new, post covid work for live audiences. I look forward to opportunities to perform this work in the future.

What is next for you Sarah Jane?

 As an independent creative artist who works from contract to contract, I often ask myself this question! Mostly, the answer unfolds, like a meandering track or river; directed but responsive, organic and in flow. In general, I plan to continue to ride the funding wave in order to develop my creative practise and I want to spend time with my three children and be present in their lives as they grow. I am constantly learning new languages and ways of seeing/being and working and enjoy the laboratory studio that BEES so generously provide to me on level 5.  Article 13 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples states that Indigenous peoples have the right to revitalize, use, develop and transmit to future generations their languages, oral traditions, writing systems and literatures and I hope to continue to support others in this space in the future. In the meantime, I will work collaboratively with climate change and marine scientists and devote my time championing the importance of place, nature based learning and wild thinking. To commission a work, book a workshop or create a connection with Dr Sarah Jane Moore, please reach out on [email protected]




Posted by on November 2, 2022 in Uncategorized

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Artist in Residence at South Port State High School, October 2022

In October 2022, I was lucky enough to be an artist in residence at South Port State High School. On behalf of the Art Department, led by Mr Luke Lilly, colleague and friend Ms Claudia Pasten invited me to conceptualise a day of learning for the students. Claudia and I planned an incursion artist in residence workshop for the 16 year 7 students.

The day of learning was supported Jason Hassard, the Junior School Principal who visited the classroom during the workshop and said; ‘how wonderful it was for the students at South Port High School to have a professional artist of such high calibre visit the school.’

Ms Pasten supported the students by having them released from their regular year 7 timetable to focus on their visual arts skills and to explore the medium of print making with Dr Moore.

The dedicated Visual Arts teacher said of the residency; ‘The theme for the term was Deadly Sins and the students have been working hard all term on their visual arts diaries. I reached out to Dr Sarah Jane Moore and organised the residency in order to for the students to learn from a professional artist. I wanted the students to remember the experience for the rest of their lives. This turned into an enriching experience and fun filled day for all involved’.

Talented visual arts student Natasha Pasten-Bennett said in an interview after the residency ‘I learnt how to print make. I loved learning the etching process on clear acetate. It was fun.’

I am so proud of the year 7 Art Excellence students at South Port High School; their ideas were amazing and the collographs and etchings that they created during the workshop were outstanding.

I look forward to seeing the Through the Looking Glass perspex installation project that we began during the workshop come to fruition as the term progresses.

I would to thank Sean Bennett for constructing the Through the Looking Glass perspex and timber installation art work for the students to print on.

Gratitude and kudos Deputy Principal Junior/Secondary Katrina Bayldon and Dean of Students year 7 for supporting the project.


Posted by on October 22, 2022 in Uncategorized

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Stories on Sunday, October 30 2022

Stories on Sunday, October 30 2022

Tasmanian based musician Oliver Gathercole and Sarah Jane Moore are happy to be performing together again.

Performer, teacher and professional musician Oliver Gathercole will travel from his home based studio in nipaluna / Hobart to Bondi to rehearse at the Bondi Pavilion in the music studios. Sarah Jane and Oliver were introduced through a musician and mutual colleague and Oliver has taught both of SJ’s young children to play the piano and been a regular part of SJ’s Tasmanian life for many years. Oliver and SJ have performed Sarah Jane’s original music in island based galleries and at festivals and events. SJ has sung in one of the choirs that Gathercole leads and respects Oliver’s work as a teacher, musician and friend. Their work together has been funded by the Hobart City Council through small grant funding opportunities for music outreach for families during covid and they have enjoyed a creative partnership through performing in schools and  large student choirs. In 2019, Sarah Jane was successful in applying for a grant from the Australia Council to fund the recording of the song Wybalenna for which Sarah Jane wrote for Gathercole to play on piano. They both visited Flinders Island to enable this song to unfold.

This time, in the Royal National Park, Oliver Gathercole will play Moore’s mother’s wooden alto recorder which was handed down to her after her mother’s death in the 1980s. The reinterpretation of Moore’s music in new time/space will conjure up different stories and possibilities and all members of the audience/walkers will have opportunity to lead discussions or share stories about their connections to place.

Sarah Jane is hoping to have climate change scientists and allies join the crew on Sunday and their unique perspectives and expertise as research scientists and field workers in science will be welcomed into the storying and place making of this unique event. Sarah Jane is grateful to Professor Poore and the staff and students within Biological Earth and Environmental Science for supporting the studio in which Moore creates her worlds and honours the scientists who have crossed her path to enlighten, inspire and assist her art meets science approaches along the way. Gratitude too, to ANAT for their continued support of Moore’s practice and committment to supporting Moore’s creative practice as a former Synapse artist.

The event has been supported through studio time provided by the Waverley Council’s Artistic Residency Program and Moore and Gathercole thank the Pavilion staff for enabling them to rehearse at the iconic venue. Two years ago they worked with 2020 UNSW EDI Festival Director Fergus Grealy on a musical and story sharing event that was planned to be delivered through face to face live theatre performance on site at UNSW but was pivoted online owing to covid related travel restrictions. This time the dynamic musicians will be sharing time, songs and stories as part of the UNSW Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Festival on Sunday October 30. Oliver and  Sarah Jane enjoyed working with Fergus and the EDI Festival so much that we vowed to each other that we would like to support the festival again with our creative partnership and unique style of place based Tasmanian music and are delighted to have been selected to present as part of the impressive EDI Festival line up in 2022.

Join them in the Royal National Park for this unique event. Meet them at Waterfall Station in the car park at 1 pm on Sunday October 30 and we will walk together and story, talk and listen to the bush and to each other.

This event is an inclusive and family friendly event.

BYO walking shoes, water bottles, snacks and sunscreen. Listening and sharing are important elements of this musical experience.

Register through this link; Oliver and I look forward to meeting, talking with and walking with you this Sunday.


Posted by on October 17, 2022 in Uncategorized

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Remembering River Gum SJMoorejpg



Posted by on February 17, 2021 in Uncategorized

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River Business Children’s Book

In December I self published the River Business Children’s book. It’s an island creation and is conceived, set and made in Tasmania (lutruwita / trowunna). Tasmanian wildlife, landscapes and connections inspired all elements of the book, from character development through to printing. It’s a story of friendship, respect for river and sharing.

It can purchased through the web site or Hello Bronte, Lily & Dot The State Book Store, Hobart Book Store and Fullers Book store.

River Business brings focus to an unlikely but beautiful friendship between two night-time creatures. Through lyrical prose and soft illustrations, the book shows them sharing and overcoming their differences through joy, fun and river based play.
As parents, Sarah Jane and Erin want to surround their children with kindness, connection, love and friendship.

Tasmania is known as a place of great natural beauty and deep connections and
telling Tasmanian stories like this one will help build a shared understanding of this place, for locals and for those in other parts of the world.

The book shines a light on the Tasmanian Bettong (Bettongia gaimardi). Although once common throughout Australia, this species is now extinct in mainland Australia and is wholly protected with a near threatened status. The introduction of the European rabbit, land clearing and excessive grazing of stock are the main factors that have led to the decline in the population.

The Tasmanian Bettong is a small, kangaroo-like marsupial, with small paws, large feet and a very long tail. You’ll find the bettong in eastern Tasmania, where they enjoy eucalypt forests and grassy woodlands. They are nocturnal animals, spending daylight hours in camouflaged grassy nests.

The book is a climate friendly children’s book that honours the river and emphasises the importance of listening, caring and connecting to our natural water ways and engaging in nature-based play. It is kind to the planet and printed on 100% recycled paper using vegetable / soy-based inks. To avoid plastic, the paper is uncoated. It also has a stapled spine instead of harmful glues. At the end of its life, after being read by many children and adults, River Business can make its way back to the earth as compost.


Posted by on February 10, 2021 in Uncategorized

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‘Worlding with Oysters’ poetic essay is published

A poetic essay; Worlding with Oysters

I am thrilled to have published my ‘Worlding with Oysters’ essay through story, text, poetics and image in the special issue of eTropic: electronic journal of studies in the tropics. With a focus of art, science and marine environments I imagine rivers and oceans as essential learning spaces and places rich in diversity, story, hope and song. This is my first poetic essay form and I am thankful for the opportunity to work with Associate Professor Anita Lundberg, Editor-in Chief at eTropic. The special issue Environmental Artistic Practices and Indigeneity: In(ter) ventions, Recycling, Sovereignty brings together creative works, poetic essays and acadmic articles which address numerous forms of Indigenous artistic practices. This collection speaks literally and metaphorically of the ocean and the river ecosystems of the Pacific Islands, Australia, French Guiana, the Carribean and Southeast Asia.




Posted by on September 5, 2020 in Uncategorized

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Worlding in futures

I write from nipaluna, Hobart in lutruwita Tasmania, Australia. I overlook timtumili minanya, River Derwent from a land as ancient as the skies. I tell stories that tap into futures informed by the oldest continuing and living cultures imaginable. My worlding draws on connection to place, space and time. The stories I tell conjure oral histories and told cultures whose murmurings hover in lived memory. They shadow the written word and illuminate precious knowledge. I shine light on caves of understanding that are as old as the sun. I hurl my knowledge spears on and through and into 2050. I embrace past, present and future.  My spears sense bright futures with high standards of caring for Country and ourselves. My spears sense hearts bursting with curiosity, cultural pride and deep joy. My spears sense reformed communities, connected in peace. I launch in hope.

Sarah Jane Moore, June 2020


Posted by on July 2, 2020 in Uncategorized

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Australia Council CREATE Funding recipient Sarah Jane Moore

Worlding with Oysters

On June 16 it was announced that I have been awarded a Create Australia Council Grant to support my visual art practise.  I am thrilled to announce this and look forward to sharing my practise as the year progresses.

Why Sydney Rock Oysters?

Since working in the Science Faculty at UNSW Sydney in 2017, my professional art practice has nestled into the nexus between art and science, with a focus on the oyster. In 2018, I met UNSW Indigenous Scientia Fellow Dr Laura Parker (Wiradjuri) when she presented her dynamic research that mapped the ways in which oysters struggle to adjust to climate change. Meeting her and listening to the dire projections about the plight of Sydney’s oysters inspired me to shift my artistic practise to embrace arts activism, science communication and art works for change. In 2019, I secured the Australian Network Art Technology (ANAT) Synapse Artist in Residency funding and spent the year as the oyster artist in residence in Biological Earth and Environmental Science at UNSW. The residency culminated in academic publications, a community reef-building event; songs, poetry, lectures, workshops, a keynote for the Biosciences Education Australia Network Conference at the University of Melbourne; an exhibition at Culture at Work Art/Science Research Hub in Pyrmont and a commissioned performance at the University of Sydney for prominent oyster researcher Professor Pauline Ross.

What has been your experience of lock down?

To work professionally as an artist is sometimes a precarious place. It means sporadic income, applying for grants, hoping to sell art works from yearly exhibitions and relying on the good will of clients to invest in buying visual work, attend workshops and support the centrality of the creative arts in our daily worlding. In February I relocated to lutruwita Tasmania to care for family and lost most of my income, access to materials, gallery supports and buyer networks.

What next?

In 2020 my creative research dialogues continue to be supported by UNSW through an Adjunct Associate Lecturer role. This provides access to a lab/studio space and guidance from the UNSW Centre for Marine Science and Innovation alongside vital exposure to observe experiments that test the impacts of climate change and environmental stress on marine life.

In August I begin recording the three songs that I have written in lock down. They explore my Worlding with Oysters theme as I begin to prepare for my multi disciplinary exhibition in October 2020.

Anton Rehrl of Corvid Photography will continue to be working with me on digital outreach and I will be recording in Margate at Reel to Reel Studios for the first time and Oliver Gathercole will accompany me on the grand piano. Local photographer Nigel Richardson has agreed to photograph the experience and so watch this space for more images.

Please reach out, view my work, share an oyster story and create a connection.

I can be can be contacted at [email protected] and my blog is

Digitised galleries of my work can be viewed through the following links:



Posted by on June 28, 2020 in Uncategorized

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Imagining Futures with Yulia Nesterova

Yulia Nesterova and I began conceptualising work together after spending time together in Sydney Australia in November 2019. Despite some post covid set backs in negotiating face to face projects that workshop, make and play, Yulia and I were successful in being selected to write a back ground paper for UNESCO that imagines futures.

I write from nipaluna, Hobart in lutruwita Tasmania, Australia. I overlook timtumili minanya, River Derwent from a land as ancient as the skies. I tell stories that tap into futures informed by the oldest continuing and living cultures imaginable. My worlding draws on connection to place, space and time. The stories I tell conjure oral histories and told cultures whose murmurings hover in lived memory. They shadow the written word and illuminate precious knowledge. I hurl my knowledge spears on and through and into 2050. I embrace past, present and future.  I launch in hope. I shine a light on caves of understanding that are as old as the sun. My spears sense bright futures with high standards of caring for Country and ourselves. My spears sense hearts bursting with curiosity, cultural pride and deep joy. My spears sense reformed communities, connected in peace.

Sarah Jane Moore, June 2020

Writing in partnership across the miles from lutruwita Tasmania to Glasgow with 17500 odd kilometres between us, Yulia and I have carved out time to imagine a future, together. As she sleeps, I wake. Each day/night grows the conversation. Indigenous approaches are driven by a deep commitment to nurture land and avoid unnecessary planetary travel and movements and so we have paid particular attention to our sharing and learning across the digital space. We have forged deep, creative and imaginative connections that have secured a local, global and democratic path and process towards imagining our future.

We have been worlding together and it has been delicious.

You world

I listen.

You write

I weave.

You sleep

I walk.

You dream

I gather.

I lean on the ancient, breathe salt and chew seaweed.

I sing to you. 

Out loud.

With love; SJ.


Posted by on June 28, 2020 in Uncategorized

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Look Away


Posted by on June 27, 2020 in Uncategorized

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