Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Knowledges series: Art

Our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Knowledges series continues, with this fourth seminar focusing on Visual Art. It will be held on Friday, September 21, and we will welcome three distinguished speakers – Djon Mundine, Dr Lynette Riley, and Janelle Evans.

Djon Mundine OAM, a member of the Bandjalung people of northern New South Wales, is a distinguished pioneer Aboriginal curator and artist. As a foremost figure in the Australian art world, he is an activist, writer, commentator, and critic. Djon will speak about the concept of art curation within Aboriginal knowledges, and how art was created as a communal, social and political act as a reaffirmation of and commitment to the relationship or participants to each other, to society, to the land-environment and to the spiritual cosmos.

Dr Lynette Riley is a Wiradjuri Gamilaroi woman and Senior Lecturer at Sydney School of Education and Social Work. Lynette is also a highly-regarded artist whose revitalisation and re-production of kangaroo and possum skin cloaks is an essential tool to re-claim traditions lost and as a way of re-affirming cultural identity. Through the process of creating the Cloaks Lynette utilises and shares knowledge from her community Elders and is re-learning Wiradjuri and Gamilaroi symbols to assist in explaining connections to culture and our environment.

Janelle Evans is of Dharug descent. She is an award-winning visual artist who exhibits internationally, and is a current PhD candidate at the University of Sydney, where she also teaches painting. Janelle will be talking to us about the concept of NAANYILI, which means deep looking in the Sydney Dharug language, and how she has applied this to her current exhibition which creatively reinterprets the objectifying photographic practice of nineteenth-century colonial ethnographers, inviting the viewer to find new ways of perceiving Aboriginal women than that projected by the myths and stereotypes formulated during the colonial period.

Seminar attendance is open to all University staff and students and presents a wonderful opportunity for those wishing to learn more about the rich cultures of our First Nations peoples. I encourage you to register early, as spaces are limited.

 

Detail from work by Artist Dr Lynette Riley, “Wilay, the Dubbo-ga Clan Totem”

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