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NAIDOC Week 2016

NAIDOC Week is held in Australia at the start of July every year.  It celebrates the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. *NAIDOC is observed by the indigenous and wider Australian community and is a chance to come together and learn more about the original culture of Australia. NAIDOC Week is an important part of Reconciliation with the original owners of the land and a recognition of their contribution to Australia’s diverse culture. There are plenty of events happening around the country at schools, universities, government agencies and public spaces.

NAIDOC Week puts a spotlight on indigenous communities but Reconciliation isn’t just confined to this one week. It is part on an ongoing dialogue and in that spirit, the Queensland Art Gallery & Gallery of Modern Art have outstanding traditional and modern indigenous collections on permanent display in both galleries. In the words of the Gallery, they have ‘chosen to put Australian indigenous art at the forefront of the QAG experience’.

Wooden poles grouped together and painted decoratively with Aboriginal motifs; a modern artwork 'Dispersed' made of large wooden letters can be seen in the background. For NAIDOC week

Installation view of ‘Everywhen Everywhere’ feat. Joe Ngallametta’s Thap yongk (Law poles) 2002-03 & Fiona Foley’s DISPERSED 2008. QAGOMA, 2014

The next time you are visiting one of the galleries, or almost any public gallery in Australia, take some time to review their indigenous pieces and learn about the stories and artists behind the work. There will be pieces that intrigue or challenge you and of course, for the foodies amongst us, plenty to delight and an opportunity to learn more about indigenous foods.

Pottery bowl decorated with painted pottery bloodwood apples. From the Hermannsburg Potters Bush Tucker series - QAGOMA. For NAIDOC Week

Hermannsburg Potters Bush Tucker series – Arrkama or Bloodwood Apple Bowl. ‘Harvest’ Exhibition QAGOMA, 2014

* NAIDOC stands for National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee, the committee that was originally responsible for coordinating the day’s events


6 comments… add one
  • Tandy | Lavender and Lime July 6, 2016, 2:06 pm

    Reconciliation is a tough journey and one we are still on in South Africa

    • Fiona Ryan July 8, 2016, 10:31 am

      As are we Tandy. Many starts and false steps but small successes and rifts mended too. We need to have faith in it and put one step in front of the other. I actually thought of you when I was writing this and the similarity of our countries on this subject.

  • Sherry from sherryspickings July 6, 2016, 3:01 pm

    I love that apple bowl. Just lovely.

    • Fiona Ryan July 8, 2016, 10:33 am

      There were dozens of them including a fun one with a witchety grub on top. Let’s hope they get another showing again soon.

  • Celia July 7, 2016, 11:32 pm

    I love that every major art gallery I’ve been to in Sydney has so many wonderful examples of indigenous art! I must add QAGOMA to my list of places to visit! xx

    • Fiona Ryan July 8, 2016, 10:34 am

      I think Australian galleries should be proud of their collections and commitment.

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