Katthy Cavaliere was an artist who made work about time: women’s time, her time. She melded performance and installation to embody time in spatial terms. Time, memory and commemoration circulate in a feminist body of work cut short by untimely death. Her final work, 11.11.11, endures in the artist’s archive as a proposal for a 12-hour performance that was drafted but never realised due to terminal illness. Katthy intended the performance to transpire on her 39th birthday—11.11.11—between 11am and 11 pm (11 o’clock was the time of her birth). The performance was to comprise the setting ablaze of a number of her personal effects, earlier transported to the historic regional town of Hill End in western NSW, where she had previously undertaken a residency. It was to be an attempt to incinerate her past through the cremation of objects oppressed by heavy burdens. But 11.11.11 came and went, and Katthy’s plan remained unrealised. Instead, all her efforts were consumed by the will to survive a cancer diagnosis that she received in July 2011 and which ultimately claimed her life in January 2012.
Daniel Mudie Cunningham, extract from ‘Curating Grief’ in Feminist Perspectives on Art: Contemporary Outtakes, eds. Jacqueline Millner & Catriona Moore. Routledge, 2018.