Waradgeri born 1962
Possum-skin cloak: Blackfella road 2011?13
weathered iron, tin, fencing and barbed wire, wire ties
260.0 x 700.0 cm
Collection of the artist, Culcairn, New South Wales
© Lorraine Connelly-Northey
Lorraine Connelly Northey’s Possum-skin cloak: Blackfella road, 2011–13
The NGV is seeking your help to acquire Lorraine Connelly Northey’s Possum-skin cloak: Blackfella road, 2011–13.
A leading contemporary Indigenous artist, Lorraine Connelly-Northey was born and grew up in Wadi Wadi and Wamba Wamba terrain south of her mother’s Waradgerie Country, disconnected from mainsprings of her culture, language and ceremony as a consequence of colonisation. Rather than practising her people’s customary art of coil weaving with sedge, Connelly-Northey has forged a dramatic sculptural practice that suits her personal history and hybrid cultural identity. She re-fashions discarded post-industrial materials – the detritus of colonisation – into objects and installations resonant with cultural meaning.
For Melbourne Now Connelly-Northey constructed Possum-skin cloak: Blackfella road, 2011–13 to explore the gulf between pre-contact and postcolonial society. This major work refers to an unsealed road near Swan Hill made from soil taken from culturally sensitive areas containing middens and Aboriginal human remains. This road is boycotted by Connelly-Northey and her family and continues to haunt the artist, as does her memory of visiting and witnessing such decimated sites with her father.
We hope you will consider supporting the acquisition of Possum-skin cloak: Blackfella road so that this work can remain with the NGV for future generations to appreciate the important story it tells.
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