Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Grogan the sellout Bogan

In 2008 I hooked up a Native Canadian artist/curator to submit a Letter to the Editor of an Australian art magazine speaking out against a young white artist who copies Yolgnu (and other) Aboriginal Art Designs, and later it was the impetus for a forum that followed in Sydney. At the time, Margaret Farmer took a stance and resigned from Safari, a Biennale of Sydney fringe event that she had co-founded - she is a white art curator in Sydney, where the artwork was being shown, and sold out. 

And just late last month, an Aboriginal artist in Brisbane and an Indian Australian artist in Melbourne have both quit their galleries in disgust about the rip-offs.  I am grateful that this issue is being aired again. Although its four years later, its still never too late to discuss rip-offs.

Over time, I have made many attempts to have the issue dealt with - contacting Aboriginal Community, the white art gallerists, and Grogan himself.  Interestingly there was never a response from the likes of Safari co-founder Lisa Corsi, Anna Pappas Gallery or Iain Dawson Gallery, but there was this brief and only, facebook response from Grogan: 

"thanks jenny. 
i've read the protocols. 
and look forward to seeing the film.
did you get a chance to see the show? if you'd be interested in starting a dialogue regarding the nature of my work i'd be up for that.
Wednesday, 2 July, 2008 4:57 PM

It seems to me that the "dialogue" card has been used by Grogan and his gallerists as a justification for way too long now. Since when does ripping off designs and also turning nasty on the original designer constitute "dialogue", and why propose "dialogue" after the event?
There are many positive examples of Aboriginal artists collaborating with others, but what has failed to be discussed in the media lately is that it wasn't just that Grogan was ripping off designs in order to make money, but also the context that he presented them in.  Bark paintings with gross portrayals of Aboriginal art, with Aboriginal people engaging in oral sex, boozing and vomiting which gallerist Iain Dawson described as "The other side to Grogan’s work is an intense social commentary on not only the figures he is representing but the manner in which he chooses to depict them. A white australian man exposing the seedy underbelly of what has become of the fragile indigenous population of this country is bound to ruffle some feathers."

Of course many Aboriginal people have objected and attempted to enter into the "dialogue". Here is a telling interview reply from gallerist Marita Smith: "It comes from a small group of people who are quite determined to derail Grogan's practice," she says. "I'm not prepared to censor the work because of a minority group who are offended by Grogan's work."  Which I would say, is a very Australian type of response in its signature style of twisted ownership, arrogance and denial.

In 2008, I thought that engaging a Native Canadian viewpoint might actually get Australians to pay attention - you know, the exotic other, over the tried and tested local Aboriginal viewpoints.  But more recently, I've put it to others and after much discussion, have decided that what we might need now is a white art critic to take issue with Grogans work and approach - coz it appears, whitey loves to only hear it from whitey.

Grogans profile really took off around the time of the original Letter to the Editor and the media interest that followed. He was just a student at the time, having sell out shows, and he is still happy to use the negative press on his website, without actually having any discussion with Aboriginal people.  
It also appears that Australians can appreciate and value Aboriginal art - particularly if they don't have to deal with Aboriginal artists at all.

Shame Australia! 

Here's the original letter of complaint fyi:

This is an article that followed shortly after in 2008:

Iain Dawsons blurb:

the Brisbane story 2012:

the Melbourne Story 2012:

Texta Queens personal response 2012:

NITV News story 2012:

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

showing Aboriginal resilience in Japan

This year I curated the Aboriginal inclusion for an exhibition in Japan.
Boomalli Cooperative members were invited to exhibit in the 18th JAALA International Art Exhibition at the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum in Japan, August 2012. A partnership between JAALA, cyberTribe and Boomalli realised the inclusion of Aboriginal artworks, for the first time in the history of the long-running JAALA Biennale.
The acronym JAALA stands for Japan, Asian, African and Latin American Artists Association. Founded in 1978, with the inaugural exhibition titled "reinstatement of man and nature" at the Metropolitan Art Museum, JAALA included countries such as Palestine, China, Korea, Philippines, Thailand, Bangladesh, Iran, Iraq, Kurdistan, Pakistan, Kenya and others.  The 2012 JAALA Biennial included a new focus on other countries: South Korea, China, Kurdistan, Taiwan and Aboriginal Australia.
Heres what I wrote in August for our inclusion in the upcoming catalogue for JAALA 2012:
It is an honour and privilege for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists to be invited to exhibit in Japan for the first time in the history of the JAALA International Art Exhibition.   The partnership between JAALA, Boomalli and cyberTribe has realised the exchange of goodwill and awareness-raising for all of our cultures.
There are many entry points for engagement with the JAALA curatorial themes. The major issues that the Indigenous artists have focused on are the oppression of our people, and also questioning the governments use of art as propaganda. It is interesting that the all of the artists have chosen to maintain a positive stance, responding with artworks about healing and cultural adaptation, which is a strong testimony to Aboriginal resilience.
Boomalli Aboriginal Artists Co-operative is one of Australia's longest running Aboriginal owned and operated art galleries. Established in Sydney in 1987, Boomalli, a word derived from three different Aboriginal language groups, means: “To strike; to make a mark”. Boomalli has seen hard times in recent years, but will make a mark for its 25th anniversary in many ways in 2012 and exhibiting in Japan is a really important extension of the community program.
cyberTribe is an unfunded artist-run initiative with a focus as an online gallery but makes use of opportunities in other gallery spaces and places for Indigenous Artists locally and Internationally. The online gallery space is part archive, part gallery, part museum and part publisher, founded over a decade ago.
The artists exhibiting in the 2012 JAALA International Art Exhibition are Bronwyn Bancroft, Michelle Blakeney, Nicole Boeree, Jason Davidson, Charmaine Davis, Jenny Fraser, Danielle Gorogo, Kim Healey, Wayne Quilliam and Graham Toomey. 
The strength of the JAALA International Art Exhibition is in acknowledging the power of creativity and investing energy to spread the network and communicate across borders. Hopefully JAALA will continue with the inclusive dialogue to foster artistic responses from artists representing Indigenous cultures and other groups, locally and around the world.
Jenny Fraser 

dates and links:
'International Exhibition JAALA' at the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum, Japan ::: 

JAALA Curator Saburo Inagaki, Kurd Artist Karwan Omar and Jenny Fraser.

Koori Mail article, from August 8, 2012

at one of the JAALA artists roundtable discussions, Tokyo Metropolitan Museum

at the JAALA Opening Ceremony party.

a view of the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum courtyard.

my artwork in the JAALA exhibition 'Abonormal Cells':
Abnormal Cells features Eukarote Cells which are common in all living creatures: plants, animals and humans, and are therefore known as the building blocks of life. Once damaged by the likes of Yellow Cake Uranium, cells are mutated, never to be the same. This idea is explored through an attempt at painting notions of toxicity.

The Series was produced for the exhibition 'The Creative Cell of Life' which was an Art/Science response to the following quote:

She gave birth unto the first female of life of flash and blood, the mould and pattern for all the mothers of the Earth. She endowed her Infant Female Child with faculties and powers to conceive just what the human race is today.”
David Unaipon
Native Legends

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Digital Dreamtime: A Shining Light in the Culture War

by Jenny Fraser

After presenting at the International symposium on Māori and Indigenous Screen Production, December 2010, this was written in 2011 and recently published in Te Kaharoa:

Te Kaharoa abstract here: http://tekaharoa.com/index.php/tekaharoa/article/view/105

Te Kaharoa pdf of article here: http://tekaharoa.com/index.php/tekaharoa/article/view/105/66

and here is the unedited version below:

Light is meaningful only in relation to darkness, and truth presupposes error. It is these mingled opposites which people our life, which make it pungent, intoxicating. We only exist in terms of conflict, in the zone where black and white clash.
                                                                                                        Louis Aragon 1

The realm of the arts is often viewed as the stronghold in the last line of defence against the enduring colonisation process of the minority Aboriginal populace. It is one of few avenues in Australian society where Aboriginal people can have a voice and fortunately this is partly driven by the influence of the outside international artworld. In more recent years the digital production areas have further enabled the space and recognition for self-determined, culturally specific and diverse sources of creativity, exchange and community building. This is all despite a culture war where mainstream institutions such as the galleries sector, the associated funding bodies, academia and the media are all being utilised and strengthened as non-military mechanisms of imperialism.  

The culture war, or history wars, have mostly been enacted in the mainstream society through the media and the academy. Also at issue is establishing whose definition of Australia will dominate? and on what basic historical precepts? That is, was Australia invaded or settled? Were there massacres or not? Were the children taken away or not? Which society is more immoral? Under John Howards prime minister-ship (1996 - 2007), those whose scholarship mentioned the words invasion, massacres and forced removal as truths of Australian history were labelled as Black Armband historians. Others mobilised to decry any negativity towards Australia and Australian history. Subsequently, views contrary to the neo- liberal version began to find themselves further marginalised. Including if those views were communicated through the arts and particularly if the artists were Aboriginal.

Works by Aboriginal artists are rarely, if ever, included in mainstream Australian New Media Arts exhibitions or events, and likewise, there are very few Aboriginal curators who include Aboriginal New Media Arts in their exhibitions, so by default there is a huge divergence. This is a curious position because the exclusion or separatism would barely be tolerated in exhibitions that represent a more popular artform, like painting for example. There would be a huge outcry because Aboriginal Art is quite prominent internationally, especially in contrast to Australian Art.It seems that Aboriginal people are expected to assimilate and give up general cultural and social practices, however, artistically the expectation is the reverse ~ keep those nice ancient artworks coming!

Over the past decade or so, part of the "New Media problem" was explained away with excuses relating to expense, lack of staff expertise and limited access to technology. Of course, over time the technical issues have changed, but not the attitudes in the industry. There is also the problem of cultural jealousy or entitlement issues from non-Indigenous artist colleagues that creates a kind of lateral violence, from artist to artist. A young Chinese Curator recently publicly admitted this by stating "Moreover, the success of the Indigenous art industry in the Northern Territory means non-Aboriginal artists often feel neglected" about the issues inherent in her exhibition of local artists who have resided in Darwin, titled 'Territory Time'.It really must be said that the resistance to inclusive attitudes towards Aboriginal artists can only be attributed as institutional racism. As Greg Tate has written "No area of intellectual life has been more resistant to recognising and authorizing people of color than the world of the "serious" visual arts. To this day it remains a bastion of white supremacy…"3

However, it isn't only Aboriginal culture that has been silenced by the actions of John Howards' government. When the Australia Councils' New Media Arts Board was disbanded for political reasons, it left a huge gap for mainstream, or non-Indigenous New Media Arts. Since then the board has been renamed "Inter-Arts", after the Canada Council namesake. Now only guest peer assessors are engaged, instead of having board members over a term of 1 – 3 years, so essentially the brains trust of the board has been lost and so has the relationship to some of the Aboriginal Artists that felt confident and persistent enough to apply. From where I sit as an artist who has had first hand experience with funding body boards, I find it unfortunate that no other Australia Council board has taken up the slack and bothered to really engage peers with New Media expertise, or effectively implemented initiatives with a New Media focus. Although, the other artform boards have gladly accepted the funding that was disseminated for New Media projects. The most recent paradox being that the Australia Councils 2011 roadshow propaganda imparted a lip service focus on the strategic priorities of "Artistic Innovation", "Arts Content in the Digital Era" and "Indigenous involvement".4


image: Aroha Groves, 'Whats a blakfella doing in a Virtual Realm', Machinima, Dimensions Variable

Trans Media, Inter-Art or Interdisciplinary Artwork specifically describes a process that engages more than one single art form, either between different art forms or collaborations involving cultural and artistic differences. ‘Burning Daylight’ is a recent example of a large-scale interdisciplinary new media production which is devised and performed by the Marrugeku Company, physical theatre practitioners from the Stalker Theatre Company and also featuring local talent in Broome, a remote coastal town in the far north-west Kimberley region.

Incorporating contemporary dance, film, live music and karaoke, the project combines the unique performance style of Western Australian Indigenous dancers and musicians with Malaysian martial arts, unique Japanese and Chinese influences, and the company’s visual and acrobatic performance language. A series of happening dance scenes unfold highlighting the friction, local humour and cultural collision in the streets at night in the part of Broome known as “The Bronx”.  The karaoke videos envelope the onstage performers with historic Broome characters... such as the pearl diver, geisha and the Aboriginal cowboy. Although on tour now, this kind of production is rarely seen in Australia, due to the lack of funding and support for such large-scale events, but is featured in many international festivals for large arts-friendly audiences.


image: Burning Daylight, Marrugeku Company 2009

A few of the artists that have invested a great deal of energy into crafting a practice and also in developing a movement of Aboriginal New Media Arts in Australia are r e a, Jason Davidson and myself and sometimes we present works under the name of the Blackout Collective. Because we also work in a variety of disciplines and come from diverse backgrounds we have achieved some groundbreaking works. Each of our works comment on our own Aboriginal experience while establishing a niche and maintaining our own unique style. Our works are also often more appreciated internationally than in Australia, yet none of us have received project funding from any Australia Council artform board since the disbanding of the New Media Arts Board in 2004.

Image: the blackout collective website circa 2003

r e a is a Gamilaraay/Wailwan artist, originally from Coonabarabran, a remote town in New South Wales, but is a long-time Sydney resident.  She has a background in electronics in her mainstream employment and went on to study photography at the College of Fine Arts in Sydney and other courses at post-graduate level including Digital Imaging and Design at New York University.  She has a “long” history in the New Media Arts scene and her current practice mainly involves video and digital imaging processes.
Her recent work ‘maang (messagestick)’ is a three channel video and sound installation featuring historical 16mm black and white film excerpts originally made by William Grayden during his expedition, with Pastor Doug Nichols. The ABC TV show Time Frame, described this footage as “remains today a powerful expose of the conditions suffered by some of the Pitjantjatjara Aboriginal people who had been displaced by the 1956 Maralinga atomic bomb tests.” 5 The tests were ordered by the British and carried out by Australians, it lasted for ten years, The Pitjantjatjara people were forced from their native land, they had then been hit by serious drought. Seeking water, food and medical attention, they had struggled across hundreds of kilometres of outback terrain to reach the Warburton Mission.  There the camera documented the terrible results of sun exposure, thirst and starvation, trachoma and blindness. 
Maang (messagestick) was shown at Planet Indigenus in Toronto 2009, the 2007 Auckland Triennial and was also toured Asia in the International Digital Art Project 'Vernacular Terrain 2' exhibition which featured Australian Aboriginal artists for the first time in 2008.

image: r e a, detail from maang (messagestick) 2006-07, Three channel DVD & sound installation, Dimensions Variable

image: Jason Davidson, 'Falcon Wings for Hope' detail from ‘Street Machine’ , 2010.

Jason Davidson a Gurindji/Mara/Nalakarn artist, currently based in Canberra, has a background in music and design. He studied Visual Arts at Charles Darwin University in the Northern Territory. His practice involves producing works including elements of animation, video, music and his unique ‘X-Ray’ art style - hand drawn designs of animals and body organs. Jasons work, ‘Street Machine’  explores ideas about masculinity and health – the car as a body and incorporates his signature x-ray art/sci-fi style digital designs.

He said of the work “This project is about looking at ways to break the white mans magic spell. This is a small part of my story a message back for the community, a message about hope, its there, you cant see but maybe you can feel it and maybe sometimes hope has a way to find and call all those once were warriors who been reduced to dust.” 6 A project that is already seven years in the making, he produced the work coinciding with his research in Cross-Cultural Communication Breakdown as a part of his Masters of Health degree at the Tropical Health Institute.

Very recently he has brought these issues to light again with the launch of a new website Aboriginal Imagination. Featuring the arts, health and copyright, the website is also intended as a safe haven for family members and other artists to promote their artwork in an Aboriginal controlled environment free of other cultural gate-keepers.

Slide: Jenny Fraser, detail from ‘Indian Cowboys / Cowboy Indians’, Video Installation, 2009

With a background in education, my art practice to date has involved developing a screen-based practice, curating exhibitions and maintaining a long-term online gallery presence. I am a Murri and studied through the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, and am currently based between there and Darwin in the Northern Territory. 
Recent work ‘Indian Cowboys / Cowboy Indians’ is a communication to my old people. When pondering their image, I noticed that the photographs had been doctored to lighten them. This pains me. It seems that they were too black. They worked on cattle properties, far away from their homelands. I wish to try to let them know what their old stomping ground is like now… dressing-up in the photo booth is something that people do for fun on our home-lands. It’s not real, but it is the photography of the day in a theme park inspired playground. Pictured here is my art family, lenticular-style, a movement, a resistance… I am left to wonder how real the portrait sittings were for my old people? Did they find it fun? Given a choice, how would they dress now? Would they choose the Indian or the Cowboy or the Cowboy Indian? The work was initially shown at ICAN the Indonesian Contemporary Art Network in Jogjakarta.

  As Martin Luther King Junior has said “Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that." 7 Therefore my personal contribution to culture and sharing the love for over a decade has included founding and maintaining cyberTribe – an online art gallery that features the works of Indigenous Artists internationally. With a regular program of exhibitions both online and in other gallery spaces, it fills a much needed space, in order to appreciate the work of those labelled as “Urban Artists” producing conceptual / new media / contemporary artwork alongside those innovating in traditional or customary practices and to comment on individual and collective Aboriginal experiences.

image: cyberTribe logo circa 2010

Any Indigenous presence in the world of Indigenous Arts provides new perspectives for audiences and perhaps encourages more inclusion of Indigenous Art in the mainstream exhibitions and events, where this is often overlooked or subject to cultural gate-keeping. Many digital productions include participation by Indigenous people and contributes to individual and community empowerment.  These images and initiatives produced under the idea of self-representation can then talk back to the dominant images as a matter of conflict between alternative readings of society. Institutional acceptance of this requires true leadership and the challenge of genuine discourse.


references / bibliography:

1. Aragon, L. (1926) Paris Peasant, "Preface to a Modern Mythology".
2. Zhou, S. (2011) Chan Contemporary Art Space Interview. Off The Leash, p 16, July
3. Tate, G. (1989) ‘Nobody Loves a Genius Child’, Village Voice (November 14)
4. Christie, L. (2011) 'Darwin Funding Forum Presentation', Australia Council website as at June 30:http://www.australiacouncil.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0011/102026/Darwin_Funding_Forum_presentation_for_attendees.pdf
5. Time Frame (1997) '1967...Citizens At Last?' ABC TV Show, Episode 5; Online Archive: http://www.abc.net.au/time/episodes/ep5.htm
6. Hall, S. (1980) 'Fetishism in film "Theory" and "Practice"', Australian Journal of Screen Theory, 5 and 6. pp.48-66.
7. Davidson, J. (2010) Email conversation, September 24, 2010

other related links:

Blackout Collective - http://www.cybertribe.culture2.org/blackout
Marrugeku Company – 'Burning Daylight' - http://www.marrugeku.com.au/burningdaylight
Jason Davidson – 'Street Machine' - http://www.aboriginalimagination.com.au/projects.html
r e a - http://www.breenspace.com/artists/21/exhibitions/r-e-a
Jenny Fraser - http://www.cybertribe.culture2.org/jennyfraser
cyberTribe - http://www.cybertribe.culture2.org
Aroha Groves – video: a walkthrough of 'Connections2' - http://www.youtube.com/sistagrlro 

Monday, April 30, 2012

a conversation about big eye aboriginal animations exhibition

A  conversation between Jenny Fraser and Rennae Hopkins

for the Big Eye: Aboriginal Animations exhibition

Animation has the capacity to move across the boundaries of imagination representing a visual connection to the traditional Aboriginal kinship structures of both moiety and totemism … a visual experience that identifies the non-Indigenous audience with both the mystical and the unknown.

The ancient design styles from both countries lend themselves to the animation artform. When we really look at customary material culture we can almost see objects like bark paintings or totem poles come alive in our minds eye, even without an understanding of their stories. They have such a strong visual literacy all of their own.

Exactly, it’s so important that we retain intellectually, more than just a collection of short animations … this exhibition is vital as a contemporary sharing of indigenous cultural heritage and ongoing cultural maintenance.

True. in the mainstream Australian Arts industries, there is a very big divide between film-making and media arts arenas. Apparently the two entities shall never meet, and sadly the Aboriginal sub-sections of those industries have followed suit. However, in other countries, like Canada, the artsworld is bighearted enough to embrace and support both, simultaneously. on a curatorial level, animation was chosen as a screen-based genre that crosses that divide with ease, along with the other divides, like age, education and socio-economic status.

it’s typical and unfortunate that Blackfellas in a position of education and access continually conform to mainstream conservatism and boundary construction. Instead we need to draw on our similarities as Aboriginal peoples, not just as Blackfellas but worldwide and globally … i do know that the mythology of First nation Peoples of both Canada and Australia are very similar … both hold a common belief that human consciousness developed from a form of totemic connection. It is this mutual understanding of a collective consciousness between both parties that we see evidenced within the animations … ideas of belonging nature – and creation.

The Dreaming Stories by Aboriginal nations in Australia and Raven Tales from Canada are great examples of Creation stories from an animist perspective in action. Generally animals are a great mirror for our own behaviours. This is in reflection of the true essence of our identity. Everything else comes after the beginning…

Ahh Deadly sista… in Big Eye, the Canadian and Australian Aboriginal artists expression is centred on a fusion between traditional and urban – contemporary and ancient. This is where we now find ourselves as indigenous peoples globally. Each generates an almost visual poetry as a narrative connected to the subconscious and the unknown. Two words - ‘you’ and ‘us’ – register a relationship between atmosphere and earth. This is understood as a time continuum between the past, present and future which then returns us back to the start, never-ending. This is what has always made our world view separate and unique to the West which sees the world as linear – a series of events.

Yes, we can only strive to honour the past as our teacher, honour the present as our creation, and honour the future as our inspiration, this is ‘Dreaming’ in action :) The work Boy and Moth is particulaly interesting in this regard as it is a contemporary myth, or re-Dreaming from the mind of Writer and Kombumerri Traditional owner John Graham, simultaneously referencing all realms. similarly in Darkness Calls, the comic book drawn by steven Keewatin sanderson, we can see how all is inter-related through the life of Kyle, the main character, his friends, family and ancestors alike.

It is no coincidence that we discover such similarity … it is a living demonstration given the shared colonisation processes of both countries, which were designed to systematically destroy native languages and cultures and assimilate First nation Peoples into white society … these animations serve as a product of healing and adjustment to the reinvention of Aboriginal identity for a new age.

Trans-Generational Trauma has manifested in many ways, in most Aboriginal families. Again the reason why so many of our people conform as a sign of success … it is important to note that before the official Apology by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, the Canadian Government had handed over $350 million compensation to Residential school Abuse sufferers and this was invested into culturally significant intitiatives; such as talking circles, language revitalisation and digital storytelling projects. This is a good model for Australia to follow; in proactively addressing the impact of the wrongs of the past on an individual and collective level and move forward with a healthier mindset.

About time and long overdue … any strategy that encourages the nurturing of Indigenous First nation Peoples own separate and viable intellectual property outside of the relationship of an ongoing oppression through colonisation is vital.

There are currently very few avenues for Aboriginal voices to be heard. Animation is one of the artforms acceptable to mainstream non-indigneous audiences.  Unlike other Aboriginal content, they’re even screened on main-stream prime time TV!

Unfortunately this becomes our two edged sword … in fitting in within avenues of mainstream audience the true authenticity of ceremony and practice within our own inherent system of storytelling has become lost. For instance the idea that through parable, the development of human consciousness and mythology is established as a direct link to a faith in God (Biami) or a higher being as a final stage of human evolution … is not really considered beyond the aesthetic forms of the animation.

Agreed… but if we keep involved in creative acts, we maintain connection to the essence of our ancestral roots and become at one with Biami, or Jabreen in that very moment. As Luis Riel, an important Metis Leader prophesised in 1885: “My people will sleep for one hundred years, when they awake it will be the artists who give them their spirit back”.  


Rennae Hopkins is a Maiawali Karuwali and Pitta Pitta Aboriginal woman from Boulia, North West Queensland. Rennae completed her degree at the Queensland University of Technology studying in Communication Design. I am excited at the endless possibilities made available in regards to cutting edge technology and animation … what is most exciting is how these new mediums can reflect a very sophisticated contemporary understanding of our own personal experience as Indigenous peoples in ways that previously were only visions of fantasy and romantic mystery.’

Jenny Fraser is a ‘digital native’ working within a fluid screen-based practice, also partly defined through a strong commitment to Artist / Curating as an act of sovereignty and emancipation, founding cyberTribe online gallery in 1999. A Murri, she was born in Mareeba, Far North Queensland and her old people originally hailed from Yugambeh Country in the Gold Coast Hinterland on the South East Queensland / Northern New South Wales border.

Big Eye was finally shown in Canada!  - at vtape in Toronto, October 2011. Part of the Aboriginal Curatorial Collectives Colloquium exhibition program, collectively named Mzinkojige Waabang (He/She is Carving Tomorrow) produced by Wanda Nanibush.

and the Big Eye exhibition will finish up the tour where it began - in Darwin 2012