Literary and Performing Arts

Art / Theatre / Ceremony / Film / Photography / Books / Music / Dance

First Nations designers and local Indigenous models dazzle in Boorloo

07/06/23 National Indigenous Times: Native Threads, curated by Karla Hart, showcased creative, vibrant, and authentic beauty grown out of the Indigenous community as designers unveiled their latest creations in Boorloo on Monday. Click here to view article

Dark Emu has sold over 250,000 copies – but its value can’t be measured in money alone

08/02/23 The Conversation: An interesting examination of how Dark Emu has impacted the Australian nation. The Conversation tracked the impact of the original edition of Dark Emu over five years, from 2014 to 2019, to look at how it contributed to (or otherwise altered) six categories of value, or “capital”. They were: financial (the primary way our culture measures a book’s success), but also social, human, intellectual, manufactured and natural. Click here to read article.


50 years of Black theatre shines a spotlight on the present and future

12/11/22 National Indigenous Times: The 50th anniversary of the National Black Theatre goes beyond a birthday, it’s a reminder of Indigenous achievement in the arts sector and wider Australia and an opportunity to reflect on where it all came from and social attitudes today.

Kimberley woman debuts award-winning film to her hometown

31/10/22 NITV: Film director Jub Clerc’s much-hyped debut is set to sweep Australian screens but first, she’s returning to the Kimberley for the sweetest of homecomings. Sweet As, the tale of an Indigenous girl named Murra who is sent on a traveling photo safari for at-risk teens against a stunning West Australian backdrop, has attracted awards and acclaim since premiering in August

Honouring the lives of Uncle Archie Roach and Aunty Ruby Hunter

27/10/2022 Victorian Government: The statues are anticipated to be installed in November 2023. Today the Victorian Government announced that statues honouring the late Uncle Archie Roach AM and Aunty Ruby Hunter are to be created and installed in Fitzroy.


Blak music’s finest on show at new First Nations festival

17/10/22 NITV Arts: A new festival celebrating the wealth of First Nations musical talent will see some of the industry’s biggest names perform in rural Victoria. Hosted by the Dja Wurrung, Taungurung and Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people, ‘First and Forever — A celebration of Blak excellence’ will take place on November 27 at the gathering place Hanging Rock in Victoria.

First Nations artists stack the decks of ARIA nominations

12/10/22 NITV Music: Blak artists around the country will have a nervous month’s wait, with today’s release of the ARIA nominations setting the scene for the November awards ceremony. First Nations talent were recognised in every category, with appearances from familiar faces alongside some first-time nominees


Meet the Murri artist wrapping the ‘controversial’ in colour

26/09/22 SBS NITV: Gordon Hookey made a name for himself as one of the most provocative artists in the industry. But the Murri man says his practice is all about ‘holding a mirror’ up to society. Hookey is part of the Brisbane-based Indigenous art collective proppaNOW and has opened a new exhibition, A MURRIALITY, which is a cross-section of his thirty-year career. While some typecast his work, Hookey denies any labels, saying instead his work is a reflection of reality.

‘I called him Uncle’: Remembering iconic theatre great Uncle Jack Charles

14/09/22 ABC: The Aboriginal use of the term ‘uncle’ implies many things and often not a biological relationship.

Forty years ago, Goanna’s Solid Rock took Indigenous rights to the masses

03/09/22 ABC: In May 1981, singer-songwriter Shane Howard was unwell. Between late nights touring Victoria relentlessly with his band Goanna and early mornings helping to raise his young family, he’d ended up “physically debilitated”. On doctor’s orders, Howard took a break. He travelled to Adelaide, boarded the Ghan, and headed to Uluru to camp for a while.

Queensland’s Embodied Knowledge show exhibits diverse range of Indigenous artists

25/08/22 National Indigenous Times: With a strong First Nation presence, the Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Arts’ recent Embodied Knowledge exhibition featured 19 artists from across Queensland highlighting issues of Indigenous artists, voices of women and LGBTQIA+ artists.

Aboriginal art is making waves overseas – but some major myths need busting

11/08/22 ABC: In 2019, British comedian Ricky Gervais was caught up in an art scandal when his Netflix series After Life featured fake Indigenous art hung prominently in the background of a set.

Indigenous Woven Sail Wins Australia’s Telstra Art Award 2022

10/08/22 Art Asia Pacific: On August 5, Australia’s Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory (MAGNT) announced the winners of the 2022 Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards (NATSIAA). The main Telstra Art Award, which includes an AUD 100,000 (USD 69,840) cash prize, was granted to Margaret Rarru Garrawurra of the Yolŋu people from the northeastern Arnhem Land.

Archie Roach, Aboriginal musician, songwriter and artist, dead at 66 after ‘a remarkable life’

30/07/22 ABC: Celebrated Aboriginal musician, songwriter and artist Archie Roach has died at the age of 66 after a long illness.

Wodonga’s Mubal and Bali photography exhibition celebrates motherhood and culture

28/07/22 ABC: Yorta Yorta and Wiradjuri woman Mahlia McDonald nearly didn’t take part in The Mubal and Bali Photography Program, but she is glad she changed her mind.

Australia’s national anthem has been reimagined by this Aboriginal rapper

24/07/22 SBS: A unique approach to imagining a new Australian anthem that combines table tennis, rap and reflections on Aboriginal cultural identity is being showcased in the United Kingdom.

The meaning behind new Indigenous murals splashed across Perth CBD buildings

22/07/22 National Indigenous Times: The 140 Perth building is now home to two new murals by Nimunburr and Yawaru artist Kambarni (Kamsani Bin Salleh) and Whadjuk, Ballardong and Yamatji artist Marcia McGuire.

Australia’s Indigenous art industry is worth a quarter of a billion dollars, so why do artists only end up with a fraction of the profits?

19/07/22 ABC: Aboriginal art is becoming a big business, with both Australian consumers and tourists wanting to take home a memento from Down Under. However, it’s not easy to verify if your boomerang or painting came from an Indigenous artist or if it was made in Indonesia, and it’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who are suffering as a result.

UK exhibition to find and return lost art drawn by WA’s Stolen Generations children

06/07/22 ABC: Hand-drawn artwork produced by children of the Stolen Generations while in a WA mission could still be hanging in homes and galleries across the United Kingdom.

What the critics are saying about groundbreaking drama ‘True Colours’

06/07/22 NITV: A brand new series that’s being described as “authentic and powerful” and “Australian noir at its best”, True Colours is an Australian-made murder mystery like no other.

Aurukun portrait wins national photo prize

02/07/22 SBS: Aurukun man Eric Yunkaporta was about to step onto the ceremonial dance grounds at a festival in remote far north Queensland, when photographer Wayne Quilliam asked if he could take a quick photo. The picture of Mr Yunkaporta in his ceremonial headgear and body paint, titled Silent Strength 2021, has now won the $50,000 national photographic portrait prize.

Mutton bird on the menu? Palawa Kipli serves up traditional feast at Hobart’s Dark Mofo Festival

30/06/22 National Indigenous Times: Tasmanian Aboriginal food was on the menu at the recent Dark Mofo Festival in Nipaluna (Hobart), with Palawa Kipli offering a variety of traditional Lutruwita (Tasmanian) cuisine.

Indigenous sisters’ dreams come true with Myrrdah label launch, Vogue feature, and Fashion Week plans

10/05/22 ABC: Being on the cover of Vogue magazine has always been the dream for Kalkadoon sisters Dale Bruce, Cheryl Perez, Glenda McCulloch and Jaunita Doyle.

The Borroloola artist behind the bold 2022 NAIDOC poster

05/05/22 SBS NITV: Capturing the essence of ‘Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!’ the Gudanji/Wakaja woman’s artwork pulls powerful messages into focus.

Filmmaker Nathan Colquhoun captures sailor James Morrill’s fight for Indigenous rights

03/05/22 ABC: A true story from the 1800s fascinated filmmaker Nathan Colquhoun so much he instantly knew it had to become a movie. British sailor James Morrill and some of his colleagues were saved by Birri Gubba people after they were shipwrecked off the north coast of Queensland.

Noongar elders and artists in Northam keep local language alive through song

03/05/22: ABC: The initiative was launched by the Community Arts Network in 2017, working with Noongar artists, elders, and their families to help revive the ancient language. Students begin by learning vowels and pronunciation, before reciting chants and performing singalongs in Noongar.

Jessica Mauboy returns home to Darwin to support remote community artists

29/04/22 ABC: Mauboy is supporting remote artists sharing work in the Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair. Jessica Mauboy grew up in the outer Darwin suburb of Wulagi and she’s proud to tell that to anyone who will listen.

First Nations poet Evelyn Araluen wins the 2022 Stella Prize with a ‘wild ride’ skewering colonial mythologies

28/04/22 The Conversation: A breathtaking collection of poetry and short prose which arrests key icons of mainstream Australian culture and turns them inside out, with malice aforethought. Araluen’s brilliance sizzles when she goes on the attack against the kitsch and the cuddly: against Australia’s fantasy of its own racial and environmental innocence.

Wayne Quilliam: Photographing the diversity of Aboriginal Australia

21/04/22 BBC: Aboriginal photographer Wayne Quilliam has been travelling across Australia for 30 years, documenting its hundreds of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander groups.

Darwin author Leonie Norrington’s book series The Barrumbi Kids to become TV show

03/04/22 ABC: Northern Territory author Leonie Norrington has some simple advice for budding writers: look to your own life and share it. “Use your own experience, your own landscape, your own people to feed your work,” she said. “That’s the essential part of you and the essential part of where you come from.”

National Indigenous Art Triennial at National Gallery of Australia centres the ongoing process of ceremony in Aboriginal art

26/03/22 ABC: When curator Hetti Perkins talks about ‘ceremony’ she invokes the image of an iceberg: the public part we experience is the tip, floating above the water — but below that surface there are stories with immense depth and breadth known only to our ancestors and senior people.

A First Nations and African Australian cultural scene is building in Shepparton

24/03/22 ABC: At one of the festival’s panels, a group of young artists gathered to discuss experiences and ideas around how to build diverse music communities. It is testament to the sort of emerging conversations that are happening in Shepparton right now.

The new Indigenous emojis coming to your smartphone screen

26/02/22 National Indigenous Times: Australia’s first set of Indigenous emojis is teaching language and culture while also bringing greater representation into texts and social media.

Snapchat adds four Indigenous languages to users’ lens platform

22/02/22 National Indigenous Times: The social media company partnered with First Languages Australia to bring the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander dialects to users screens through the app’s language learning lenses.

VIDEO: Bangarra and Sydney Theatre Company join forces for Stephen Page’s swan song

19/02/22 ABC: For more than thirty years the Bangarra Dance Theatre has told ancient stories through a contemporary lens, and its latest work is its largest offering yet.

Parents and carers are writing lullabies to help Indigenous children connect to Country

08/01/22 SBS: Daeya Stier is on stage singing a very special lullaby to the two-and-a-half-year-old boy she says “fell into my lap” when he was three weeks old.

Stolen Generations survivor and daughter find healing through art business

06/01/22 ABC: Gumbaynggirr woman Melissa Greenwood and her mum, Lauren Jarrett, know what it is like to go through hard times. They hail from the Gumbaynggirr, Dunghutti and Bundjalung tribes of the New South Wales’ east coast, where Ms Jarrett is a survivor of the Stolen Generations.

The Outback Artists hoping to show their creations with the world

28/12/21 SBS: Molly Lennon is one of a new generation of artists dreaming of a day when art rather than opals draws tourists to the South Australian outback town of Coober Pedy, 800 kilometres north of Adelaide.

David Gulpilil could be remembered as a man doomed between two worlds — or as a man who brought us joy, life, and art

05/12/21 ABC: The film director Rolf de Heer, reflecting on his friend and collaborator, David Gulpilil Ridjimiraril Dalaithngu, said the actor struggled between Indigenous and non-Indigenous worlds.

First Nations excellence recognised at prestigious 2021 Australian Fashion Laureate

01/12/21 NITV: Indigenous designers have been recognised at the 2021 Australian Fashion Laureate, which honours exceptional talent in the fashion industry. Meriam Mir woman Grace Lillian Lee was celebrated for her work as founder of First Nations Fashion and Design with the inaugural Carla Zampatti Award for Excellence in Leadership.

The stories behind these stunning images by First Nations photographers

19/11/21 SBS: Taking place at Paddington Reservoir Gardens, the 15-piece exhibition is the culmination of a five-month-long eponymous program between six Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists and their three mentors.

Will Black Lives Matter bring lasting change to Australia’s publishing industry?

13/09/21 SBS: While pakana man Adam Thompson only began writing a few years ago, it’s been an extraordinary journey so far. In 2016-17, he was the recipient of writing awards from the Tamar Valley Writers Festival and the Tasmanian Writers and Readers Festival.

Dr Fiona Foley takes top literary prize for truth-telling about QLD history

12/09/21 NITV: Dr Foley’s book ‘Biting the Clouds’ is a historical account on the sale of opium and the displacement of the Badtjala people.

Why these First Nations men are writing letters to their sons

02/09/21 SBS: Thomas Mayor is a Torres Strait Islander man born on Larrakia Country in Darwin. The author describes himself as “a father of five and a deep thinker”. “I’m always thinking about human behaviour and how humans react to certain circumstances and events,” he says.

The little Northern Territory island producing nationally acclaimed Indigenous artists

24/07/21 SBS: Pedro Wonaeamirri has been an artist for 30 years and says his natural surroundings inspire his art.

Award-winning actress Sandy Greenwood shares her passion for telling First Nations stories

10/07/2021 ABC: A Gumbaynggirr, Bundjalung, Dunghutti woman, Greenwood is experiencing a career-high at age 40 and helping young Indigenous actors find their way.

Patty Mills named Australia’s first Indigenous flag bearer for Tokyo Olympics, alongside Cate Campbell

07/07/21 SBS: Mills will become Australia’s first Indigenous athlete to carry the flag at an Olympic opening ceremony.