A collaborative exhibition including emerging Indigenous Tasmanian artists Josh Prouse, Reece Romagnoli-Townsend and Cassie Sullivan.
We develop scarring, wanted and not.
Long before the colonial structures began, scarification was a language used to tell our story. Our history. Our lineage. Us. Marks across skin told the depth of our experience, our sorrow, our aging, our identity.
The erosion of lutrawita culture began with the invasion of others. A systematic tearing apart of families results in our wounds remaining open, still, we try and heal. Our scars are stuffed with generations of pain. Sutures on openings. Openings on sutures. A mess, of sorts.
We use materials to give our scars shape and to give our voices clarity. Ink. Metal. Fabric. We use our hands to listen to our ancestors and mark our own place in a history documented to forget us.
From history to now and back again, we follow the shape of our scars.
Scarring, 2020 is a collaborative group show, entrenched in a colonial building on contested land. The blak artists grapple with deconstructing the gallery space, moving away from a traditional wall hang and in doing so turning works into cohesive sculptures with their own ethereal energy. The once predominantly white space has been turned into a mutual and supportive area where the artists hope to open a conversation about space, safety and identity; their voices stronger together than individually.
This exhibition is held across lutruwita (Tasmania) Aboriginal land, sea and waterways. We acknowledge, with deep respect the traditional owners of this land, the palawa people.
The palawa people belong to the oldest continuing culture in the world. They cared and protected Country for thousands of years. They knew this land, they lived on the land and they died on these lands. We honour them.
We pay our respects to elders past and present and to the many Aboriginal people that did not make elder status and to the Tasmanian Aboriginal community that continue to care for Country.
We recognise a history of truth which acknowledges the impacts of invasion and colonisation on Aboriginal people resulting in the forcible removal from their lands.
Our Island is deeply unique, with spectacular landscapes with our cities and towns surrounded by bushland, wilderness, mountain ranges and beaches.
I stand for a future that profoundly respects and acknowledges Aboriginal perspectives, culture, language and history. And a continued effort to fight for Aboriginal justice and rights paving the way for a strong future.
A collaboration by Blak Arts Collective.