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Law student by day, artist by night

November 18, 2020

By Jessica Borten

The Bond University Transformer program will showcase four innovative pieces by artist Eden Mili Tokatly in her first solo exhibition.

The Australian-first entrepreneurship program is open to all undergraduate and postgraduate students at the university.

“Getting involved with Transformer was kind of an accident,” Eden said.

“I had organised a meeting to discuss an app idea and thought maybe I could make something bigger out of what I’d done.

“I knew Transformer were all about supporting new projects and giving students a platform to express themselves, so I shared my ideas with Lisa. The rest followed.”

The Law and Arts student is a multidisciplinary artist, blurring the line between visual art and technology.

“When writing different lines of code, it’s all about trying to find a balance between algorithms and art,” Eden said.

“A lot of people don’t think that code can be beautiful because it’s typically quite statistical but by making it more aesthetic, I think it can be accessible to the general public.

“One of the pieces was inspired by the theremin, a musical instrument. It’s an interactive work but is still COVID safe.

“You hover your hand around a print-out of the stock market and when you move your hand over different sections, you hear what happened on that day. You can see the financial crisis from this year and hear news clippings from that time.”

Eden said inspiration for the exhibition was birthed from her time in quarantine after she returned home from America earlier this year.

“I went on exchange to the University of Southern California at the start of this year but it got cut short because of COVID and I had to come home early,” she said.

“I started writing a lot of poetry to help my mental health and bought a massive blank canvas. I did my first oil painting and I would wake up every morning, put on some music, and work on it.”

Transformer Program Manager Lisa Shaw said Eden’s exhibition was in line with the program’s objective to give students the courage and confidence to transform their ideas into reality.

“Eden’s work is quite unique because it is interactive,” Ms Shaw said.

“She has mixed in a lot of technology as opposed to the traditional art.

“It’s also something quite rare that we’d have a student who has enough pieces to have an art gallery here.”

Eden will graduate from Bond University in April 2021 and has aspirations to pursue postgraduate study in California.

“I think having my time cut short has made me more determined to go back overseas,” she said.

“I’m hoping to study studio art and then become a full-time artist beyond university.

“It might seem a bit unrealistic at the moment with international borders closed but I don’t really have a plan B.

“My plan B is ‘it’s going to work out’. I’m going to make it happen.”

Eden encouraged students from all degrees to get involved with Transformer. 

“I think if you’re ever in class and come up with a new idea, or even if you’re just walking around campus and you suddenly think of a project, don’t be afraid to take it to Transformer because they’ll be able to help develop your ideas, big or small.”

Ms Shaw said Transformer is an opportunity for students to learn valuable entrepreneurial skills and capabilities that can be utilised across all industries.

“We can do one on one coaching so if you have an idea, we can have discussions about how to bring that into fruition,” said Ms Shaw.

The exhibition opening night will be in the Transformer Hub on November 18. 

For more information on Eden’s work, follow her on Instagram @edenmilicreative or check out her website www.edenmili.art

For more information on how to get involved with Transformer, head to www.bond.edu.au/transformer or contact Lisa Shaw.