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‘We need to let country do what it’s going to do’

The 4th National Indigenous Art Triennial: Ceremony is at the National Gallery of Australia until 31 July.

THE CURRENT INDIGENOUS art triennial celebrates Aboriginal knowledge in ‘the heartland of whitefella sacred ground’ — Canberra.

‘Ceremony’ features the work of 38 artists from across Australia. The exhibition reveals how ceremony is at the intersection of Country, culture and community.

As described in the article in The Guardian:

“Queen made of wool — “the boss for them mob” — raises her right hand in a salute, as a goanna climbs the outside of Australia’s Parliament House. Above the fray of animals meeting to talk, a kangaroo and emu flank a commonwealth coat of arms that has been transformed into a vibrant shield of multi-coloured connections.

Creators_©Yarrenyty Arltere Artists_photograph-©Maria Taylor
Creators © Yarrenyty Arltere Artists. Photographs © Maria Taylor

“This Parliament House is for everyone — white, Aboriginal and any other colour. It belongs to the community,” says the artist Marlene Rubuntja, one of 11 artists from Yarrenyty Arltere art centre in Mparntwe (Alice Springs) who made the “soft sculptures” component in this work, titled Blak Parliament House. These sculptures were created with blankets dyed with pigments sourced from local plants, tea and corroded metal, as well as wool, cotton and feathers. Of Australia’s parliamentarians, she says: “They’re only sitting in the office and talking. Not listening.”


“gudhuwali-BURN” creator © Penny Evans 2020-21, photograph ©MariaTaylor

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