At the National Museum of Australia, Canberra, it's extraordinary - visit http://www.nma.gov.au/exhibitions/yiwarra_kuju/ to see and read about it. A most professionally presented range of work including many of the artists we sell, and many others we hope to stock in the near future. If you have a chance to visit this show, make sure you do. Not only for the stunning artworks but for all the supporting information about the project, the artists, the indigenous way of life, the meanings of the artworks and more....
If you can't get to see the exhibition, visit the Museum website - there's plenty to read and see. It's all interesting.
photograph from National Museum of Australia website; Photo by Tim Acker.
'It used to be blackfella Country before they built the wells. Today it's a kartiya highway. Before it used to be Aboriginal people's land, our Jukurrpa (Dreaming), waterholes, jumu (soakwaters) and jila (springs). Blackfellas used to walk around — foot-walk — not with a camel. When they saw camels and horses they'd get frightened and run away. Martu people got shot in that Country, and at Kulyayi (Well 42) Wangkajunga people got killed.
Canning made a mess of the wells and Dreaming tracks and sacred sites and law sites. He used blackfellas to get where he wanted to go, to make his mark. So it's about kartiya coming and making that line of wells.
But in another way, all those wells opened up our Country for people to travel back to Country with their kids. Because if you didn't do that the Country would be lost. Now it's easier to get to Country. We've got our own story there, two ways.
We're all family. All the stories are about how all the families got scattered across the Western Desert. And at the nine art centres, we're all related. From Wiluna and Kiwirrkurra and Balgo, Mulan, and Martu Country. From Nyarna (Lake Stretch) right down to Wiluna. Our ancestors walked that land. The Canning Stock Route forced all the people to all different places. '
excerpt from Aust National Museum website.