Short Course: Introducing Art & Design of Australia’s First Peoples



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NGV Australia, Federation Square

Ground Level

Booking required

$360 M / $400 A / $380 C
(Booking Fee $4.50)

General enquiries

Ph +61 3 8620 2222
[email protected]
9am–5pm, daily

In this introductory course, learn about the art, culture and design of Australia’s First Peoples through a close study of traditional and contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art in the NGV Collection.

Curators, artists and community leaders guide informal sessions of discovery over four weeknights. Includes a visit to the Koorie Heritage Trust exhibition They Shield Us.

Presented in Partnership with Koorie Heritage Trust and Deakin University.

Course Learning Outcomes

  • Introductory knowledge of traditional Indigenous art and culture and their connection to country
  • Understanding of the function and diversity of Indigenous art across Australia
  • Understanding of the development of Indigenous art post colonisation
  • Understanding of the nature of contemporary Indigenous art
  • Knowledge of key figures in contemporary Indigenous art
  • Skills in analysing, interpreting and discussing contemporary Indigenous art
  • Ability to speak about Indigenous art in an informed way using appropriate terminology

Wed 25 Sep, 6–8pm
An Introduction to Indigenous Art and Culture

Learn about the diversity of art in traditional Indigenous culture, its function and its connection with country.

Learning Outcomes

  • Introductory knowledge of the nature of traditional Indigenous culture and its connection with country
  • Understanding of the function and diversity of art within traditional Indigenous culture
  • Awareness of materials and techniques used in the making of traditional Indigenous art and artefacts
  • Introductory knowledge of the terms and vocabulary associated with traditional Indigenous art

Wed 2 Oct, 6–8pm
Traditional Techniques | Contemporary Modes of Practice

How are contemporary Indigenous artists informed and influenced by traditional techniques, and what was the transition from traditional to contemporary practice?

Learning Outcomes

  • Understanding of the difference between the functions of pre-contact Indigenous art and contemporary Indigenous art
  • An introductory knowledge of Indigenous rock and cave art
  • Understanding of how contemporary Indigenous artists can be informed and influenced by traditional Indigenous art

Wed 9 Oct, 6–8pm
Embracing New Media

Discover the diversity of styles in contemporary Indigenous art, with a focus on artists embracing new materials.

Learning Outcomes

  • Appreciation of the diversity of styles and media in contemporary Indigenous art
  • Skills in visual description and interpretation of contemporary Indigenous art
  • Introduction to key contemporary Indigenous artists working with new media

Wed 16 Oct, 6–8pm
Grounded In History

Where does traditional Indigenous art fit in the context of Australian art history more broadly? How are contemporary artists informed by their culture, and what is the future of Indigenous art?

Learning Outcomes

  • Understanding of traditional Indigenous art in context with Australian history
  • Introductory knowledge of Indigenous bark shields
  • Appreciation of how contemporary Indigenous artists are informed by their history and culture
  • Skills to consider and interpret contemporary Indigenous art in context with broader contemporary art practice, and in terms of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture
Learn Indigenous Marking Time NGV Australia, Federation Square

Koorie Heritage Trust Deakin University