KOORIE ART SHOW TO REVEAL BEST INDIGENOUS TALENT

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By Tom Parker

 

After celebrating its 30-year anniversary in September, the Koorie Heritage Trust will launch its second exhibition in a matter of months with the Koorie Art Show on December 5.

 

It will be the third year of the exhibition and is expected to be the most fruitful as the talent in local Aboriginal artistry continues to grow.

 

The show will run until February 28, 2016 at the Trust’s new facility in Federation Square and it will be the first time both two and three-dimensional works will be considered.

 

The CEO of the Koorie Heritage Trust, Tom Mosby, says that while the exhibition has a community focus they also want to see what the most talented artists have to offer.

 

“The idea is a community art-show where we call for all entries and don’t reject anyone,” he said in an interview with The Northsider.

 

It is a fantastic collection which we haven’t been able to really show, so for us this is not only about showcasing what we have in the collection but also to actually show the contemporary side, the fact that there is still this living culture.”

 

“It is also about looking at the new and emerging talent that we have in Victoria and it helps us identify new and emerging talent that we might like to support with exhibitions moving forward.”

 

The Art Show follows on from the Wominjeka exhibition, which began on the day of the anniversary to commemorate almost 200 years of Aboriginal artwork collections.

 

According to Mosby, most of the collections had yet to be unveiled, making for an especially fascinating display.

 

“We have this amazing collection of Victorian Koorie Aboriginal art, paintings, sculpture, stowing tools and boomerangs dating from our earliest work in the mid 1800’s up to quite contemporary work,” he said.

 

“It is a fantastic collection which we haven’t been able to really show, so for us this is not only about showcasing what we have in the collection but also to actually show the contemporary side, the fact that there is still this living culture,” he explained.

 

Koori Heritage Trust

 

It was also the first time the Trust’s new home at Federation Square was open to the public after making the move from their King Street location on the 19th September.

 

Level one and three of the Yarra Building are now occupied by the Koorie Heritage Trust and Mosby believes the move is significant for both access and cultural reasons.

 

“It was hard for people to find us [on King Street]. If we’re looking at the tourist market and the education role it was difficult for people to get to us whereas somewhere like Federation Square is so much easier,” Mosby said.

 

“Ever since colonisation, Aboriginal people have sat at the fringe of society and at our position on King Street, we were on the fringe of the CBD so bringing us to Federation Square is really about promoting and accepting and showing that Aboriginal communities are very much central to a city, to any community.”

 

At the moment it’s 30 years of telling a 60,000 year story and we want to be saying that its 60 years of telling a 60,000 year story in 30 years time.”

 

The necessary relocation has been made, the public support is stronger than ever and the artwork continues to improve but Mosby believes there is still plenty of work to be done.

 

“We need to be laying the foundation now because we want to still be operating 30 years down the track,” Mosby said.

 

“At the moment it’s 30 years of telling a 60,000 year story and we want to be saying that its 60 years of telling a 60,000 year story in 30 years time.”

 

The Koorie Art Show will be running at the Koorie Heritage Trust’s Federation Square gallery between December 5, 2015 and February 28, 2015. For more information, visit www.koorieheritagetrust.com.

 

 

Tom is in his final semester of a sports journalism degree at La Trobe University. Residing in Brunswick East, he has a strong grasp of everything happening in the northside, whether it be music, sport or even fashion.

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