In my mind suddenly I saw that your reality wasn’t shaped by circumstance but by your imagination.
One of this year’s stand out pieces is the Bombing of Darwin, by Susan Wanji Wanji. Impressive in scale and remarkable in its detail and subject matter, the piece records Wanji Wanji’s recollection of being on the Tiwi Islands when the Bombing of Darwin occurred during the Second World War.
The next time Pauline Hanson says “I speak for the people of Australia,” remember this: she will steal your integrity, roll you until you choke on your own terror, and if she can’t swallow you whole, she will drag you down and stash you in a dark forgotten place until you rot, simply because she prefers to feed on putrefied flesh.
Blacks in the back, cunts in the front and the response to it, is emblematic of how non-indigenous Australia embraces and yet looks away from aboriginal people at the same time. This ruptured thinking process is the stringy bond with our earlier task of occupying, claiming and settling Australia, in particular the ‘wilderness consciousness’ that in its day encouraged mate-ship, an easy going attitude, and above all, manners (you could not swear at the dinner table or in front of your mother) whilst allowing rape and killing to be seen as pragmatic.
Mr Illaga was been a respected and well-sought after painter since the late 1980s. He has held many solo and group exhibitions since that time and his work is held in many prominent museums and public collections, including at least nine works held by the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra.
The Gumatj clan language, Dhuwalandja, is itself the tongue of flame. This language, or tongue, like the flame, cuts through all artifice. It incinerates dishonesty leaving only the bones of the truth.