Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Culture Day Part 1

With Rich at work I headed off for another tourist day and my goodness did I pack it in.

I started with a visit to the Art Gallery NSW to see the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander collection, Art + Soul, curated by Senior Curator Hetti Perkins .

The exhibition opened with excerpts from a documentary Art + Soul that had aired here in October. In the clips you saw how the art was created, where and who by. It was incredibly impressive to say the least.

art + soul explores the diversity of Indigenous culture through three themes: ‘home and away’, ‘dreams and nightmares’ and ‘bitter and sweet’. Drawing on key works from the Gallery’s collection, it reveals the myriad contemporary artistic expressions that evidence the enduring heritage of Indigenous Australia, in all its diversity and complexity.
- from the AG, NSW website

I genuinely found the collection to be very moving, the craftmanship and imagery is unlike anything I had seen in detail before. The sense of texture created in so many of the pieces was similiar to that of optical illusions and everything was created painstakingly by hand. The deep sense of cultural history coupled with the very uncertain/displaced future that faces many members of this community....affected me.

Pay The Rent by Richard Bell
Broken heart by Ricky Maynard

"...the people who made this art never did so at the cost of their own identity, never at the cost of becoming mainstream. They hung on to their identity and tried to make it work in the 21st century.''
-Hetti Perkins

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