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Art exhibition part of postponed NAIDOC celebrations

Written by: The Hilltops Phoenix

IMAGE: The artwork featured in the On Country exhibition.
IMAGE: The artwork featured in the On Country exhibition. IMAGE: The artwork featured in the On Country exhibition.

While the date for the postponed NAIDOC ceremony is yet to be announced, the reopening of the Burrangong Gallery in the Hilltops Region Information Centre has allowed Young Society of Artists Inc (YSA) to do their bit to mark the significant time.

The centre reopened on Monday, after COVIDsafe restrictions meant the information centre was closed from June 28.

A key exhibition in the gallery is On Country.

It features works by local Wiradjuri artist Enid Clark, soap stone sculptures by Louise Adams and carved wood by Jeff Peady.

A collection of works by YSA members celebrate native flora and fauna, bushland, landscape and big skies.

Heather Ruhl from YSA said the exhibition is part of the wider national invitation to celebrate our Indigenous cultural roots.

“NAIDOC Week invites all Australians to embrace the true history of this country and as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were Australia’s first artists, story tellers, first farmers, first botanists and first naturists,” Ms Ruhl said.

“It is important for our YSA members as artists and storytellers to understand the importance of protecting our country. Through our individual art practice we can help our communities to have a greater appreciation of The NAIDOC 2021 theme – Heal Country!”

Heather is passionate about this year’s NAIDOC message.

“Heal Country calls for all of us to continue to seek greater protections for our lands, our waters, our sacred sites and our cultural heritage from exploitation, desecration, and destruction,” she said.

“Country that is more than a place and inherent to our identity. Country that we speak about like a person, sustaining our lives in every aspect - spiritually, physically, emotionally, socially, and culturally.”

The exhibition is on until August 6. The information centre is open seven days a week.

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