These works are by young indigenous artists from countries that experienced European colonisation. Now 200 years on these young people explore the challenges they face living in two cultures. In many ways the dominant colonising culture obscured and suppressed indigenous culture making it difficult for both groups to relate to each other in equal ways. Massacres, economic exploitation, loss of land and violence of all sorts continued to separate indigenous and colonising cultures.
Young urban indigenous artists from Australia, New Zealand, Canada and South America are exploring these dark histories and the continuing existing tensions to challenge society’s stereotypes of indigenous people and present their own interpretation of the colonial experience.
You need to spend some time looking carefully at these pieces, puzzling out their meanings and allowing yourself to see the world from a different point of view. This will be time well spent and will take you a long way beyond dot paintings and anthropological objects.
Fiona Foley’s large scale posed photos are immediately striking and Julie Gough’s BBQ area photos in former ceremonial sites in Tasmania are worth thinking about. Spend a few minutes watching the videos or admire Maree Clarke’s ceremonial necklace. There are many others to enjoy too.