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Is resurrection the ‘theme’ of 2022?

  • 14 April 2022
Politicians want to resurrect the fortunes of CBD cafes, film studios are resurrecting old movie franchises, and we’re all doing our best to revive flagging spirits after two years (at least?) of bad news. And here we are at Easter weekend, the resurrection story: Jesus crucified and buried on Good Friday, raised from the dead come Easter Sunday.

Of course, we fudge Easter celebrations a bit here in the southern hemisphere. Instead of fluffy ducklings and green shoots heralding new life: winter is coming. Australia’s first Deltacron cases have been confirmed, we’re bracing ourselves for a potentially ugly election campaign, and the world order isn’t exactly looking stable right now. Resurrection 2022 is off to a rocky start. 

Still, those green shoots take root in the unlikeliest places. In the depths of the Tasmanian winter, the annual Dark Mofo festival defiantly celebrates the darkness. This year’s theme, though? You guessed it — resurrection. 

‘Nature is constantly moving toward death, and resurrection,’ reads the curatorial statement, released last week. ‘As the world re-emerges from the Covid lockdowns, we are all experiencing a rebirth of sorts. The forced isolation gave rise to a re-evaluation of what matters, to new ideas, new dreams.’

Creative director Leigh Carmichael explains that the darkness offers ‘a rich vein of inspiration … it’s associated with the subconscious, and being underwater — there’s all these beautiful metaphors that are linked with the darkness.’ But Dark Mofo, he tells me, also explores the flip side: ‘The moment of the solstice has always been linked with new life and the birth of the new year.’

'Resurrection is not resuscitation: it doesn’t just restore the status quo. What many of us are longing for, in 2022, is a love that says yes to our pain, and carries us beyond it to something genuinely new.' 

While Dark Mofo and the churches have found themselves at odds on some counts, this light-shining-in-the-darkness motif is textbook Easter. The night is darkest just before the dawn. Before Sunday’s glorious resurrection comes the holy horror of Good Friday. The prelude — the prerequisite, even — to new life is a crucifixion.

Also on theme here is the new Matrix film: The Matrix Resurrections, released at the end of last year after a hiatus for the franchise of nearly twenty years. It’s been a long Easter Saturday for Keanu Reeves’ character Neo, who in the conclusion of the trilogy in 2003 submitted to his own