Changing Pathways (2018)

A site-based audiowalk of the Westmead Precinct, 2018


This project follows on from my work using the ephemeral and lo-fi medium of binaurally recorded sound to investigate experiences of place. Commissioned by the University of Sydney to make a site-based response to the Westmead Precinct in Western Sydney to introduce humanities and social sciences students studying interdisciplinary methods to the site, the audiowalk engages with the current large-scale redevelopment of Western Sydney, the redevelopment of the hospital and research centres taking place in the years up to 2020, the past and current migrant communities who have always called the area home, the neglected convict as well as Stolen Generations and Forgotten Australians histories of the precinct, and Indigenous connections to country.

The project asks, what can the new “health city” be? What makes a city? What is a hospital? Who is Westmead? Foremost, however, the audiowalk genre prompts walkers to witness the place by “being there”—and helps to activate the sensory aspects of experience.

It was a privilege to work with the many contributing artists and people interviewed.

Stream the audiowalk via Soundcloud


written & produced by Justine Shih Pearson

with (in order of appearance)
Aunty Rhonda Dixon-Grovenor, Darug-Yuin Elder
Marily Cintra, Arts & Cultural Consultant, Westmead Hospital
Emeritus Professor Stephen Leeder, AO, Director, Research and Education Network, Western Sydney Local Health District
Dr Naseem Ahmadpour, Lecturer, Design Lab, Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning, University of Sydney
Bilal Hafda, Storyteller-in-Chief, Parramatta Story Factory
Parragirl audio recordings courtesy of the PFFP Memory Project and the artists: Denise Nicholas, Jenny McNally, Lynne Edmondson Paskovski & Bonney Djuric

music by Jed Palmer & Aunty Jacinta Tobin

commissioned by the University of Sydney

thanks also to
Michael Anderson, Zoë Barry, Wendy Bryan-Clothier, Rosie Dennis, Paul Dwyer, Paul Gardiner, Lily Hibberd, Sascha Jenkins, Richard Manner, Gail Priest, Tim Sinclair, Liza-Mare Syron, Yana Taylor, Michael Texilake, Leanne Tobin, and Aunty Edna Watson

Poems by Bilal Hafda are “Stone” and “Gemini”
Songs by Jacinta Tobin are “Maybe Tomorrow” (with Sarah Pattison) and “Women’s Healing Song”