Still in My Mind: Gurindji experience, location and visuality

National Exhibition Register

  • Self Portrait on country (Wave Hill), 24 June 2014
    Brenda L. Croft Self Portrait on country (Wave Hill), 24 June 2014, 2014
    Medium
    Inkjet print on archival paper
    Dimensions
    42 x 59.5cm
    Image Credit
    Reproduced courtesy of the aritst, Stills Gallery, Sydney and Niagra Galleries, Melbourne

About the exhibition

Exhibition Outline

Inspired by the words of revered Indigenous leader Vincent Lingiari, ‘that land ... I still got it in my mind’, this exhibition considers the ongoing impact of the Gurindji Walk-Off, a seminal event in Australian history that continues to resonate powerfully today. The Walk-Off, a nine-year act of self-determination that began in 1966 and sparked the national land rights movement, was led by Lingiari and ngumpit (Aboriginal people) working at Wave Hill Station (Jinparrak) in the Northern Territory. Honouring last year’s 50th anniversary, curator and participating artist Brenda L. Croft has developed this exhibition through long-standing, practice-led research with her patrilineal community with the assistance of Karungkarni Art and Culture Aboriginal Corporation.  Lingiari’s statement is the exhibition’s touchstone, the story reviewed from diverse, yet interlinked Indigenous perspectives.

 Still in my Mind incorporates photographs, an experimental video installation, newly commissioned history paintings, contemporary and historical prints and drawings, textiles and found objects, digital platforms and archives, in a richly diverse exhibition that reveals the way Gurindji community members maintain cultural practices and kinship connections to keep this history present.

Exhibition Content

 Still in My Mind is a multi-faceted, multi-media based exhibition exploring notions of identity, home and connection to country, with the ‘Gurindji Walk-Off’ a key feature. It is curated by renowned Gurindji/Malngin/Mudpurra artist/curator Brenda L. Croft and produced in collaboration with the Indigenous community in the Wave Hill, Victoria River regions and Darwin, Northern Territory.

 The exhibition has three major components: 

  1. New experimental work by Croft comprising an immersive video installation, incorporating photo-media and sound, alongside prints and installations of found objects. These works are centred on the act of walking the ‘Gurindji Walk-Off’ track from Jinparrak (Old Wave Hill Station) to Daguragu and other sites associated with Croft’s father’s journey as a member of the Stolen Generations. The work explores the diverse experience of Gurindji people living outside customary homelands while maintaining cultural connections, thereby challenging the context of a single geographical location denoting ‘home’. 

  2. New work from Karungkarni artists including major Gurindji history works on canvas created during site visits and artists’ camps as well as textiles, prints and carvings. Language workers from Karungkarni Arts and Gurindji community elders were involved in translating all exhibition related material including catalogue texts, artwork labels, didactics and website information. Evident in the exhibition is a call for maintaining and transmitting cultural practices and the responsibility and kinship towards country. The exhibition utilises new multimedia platforms for Karungkarni artists to transmit these culturally bound historical narratives. 

  3. Significant materials from private and public archives from the early 20th century to the present comprising historical still and moving images, oral recordings and repatriated cultural material and objects. The exhibition includes proposed loans from the AGNSW, National Library of Australia, South Australian Museum, National Archives Australia, ABC, the Berndt Museum and the Museum and Gallery of the Northern Territory. 

    The nature of Croft’s research and the collaborative elements of the exhibition development identified the crucial need for Indigenous-led, community-based art practice to intervene in the colonial dialogue about ‘Indigeneity’. Moving and politically charged, the exhibition provides a distinct immersive experience into shared and specific Gurindji historically and culturally significant knowledge. While the exhibition context within time and space is not bound to the 1966 ‘Gurindji Walk-Off’ and the removal of Indigenous peoples from their land in the 20th century, it resonates with an ongoing determination to re-establish the connections to country that have been impacted since colonisation.

Artists and Curator

Curator
Brenda L. Croft in Partnership with UNSW Galleries
Artists

Brenda L. Croft, Karungkarni Artists including; Violet Nanaku Wadrill, Jimmy and Biddy Wavehill, Connie Ngarmeiye, Theresa Yibwoin, Pauline Ryan, Ena and Sarah Oscar, Michael George, Serena Donald, Leah Leaman and Dylan Miller.

Available Dates and
Exhibition Details

Available dates
07/09/2018 - 30/06/2021
Exhibition size
Over 100 sq or running metres
Originating state
NT
Organised by
Artback NT
Price
$5,000 (inc. freight)
Web Site
http://www.artbacknt.com.au/
Accompanying materials available
Catalogue/Book, Exhibition Tour Manual, Interpretative/Didactic Panels, Invitations or Invitation Template, Labels, Media Kit, Public Program Opportunities, Signage
Primary contact
Neridah Stockley
Position
Touing Program Manager
Organisation
Artback NT
Phone
(08) 89535941
E-mail
art@artbacknt.com.au
Secondary contact
Joanna Foster
Phone
(08) 89535941
E-mail
art@artbacknt.com.au
Acknowledgement
A partnership between UNSW Galleries, UQ Art Museum and Karungkarni Art and Culture Aboriginal Corporation, with support from ARC Discovery Indigenous Award, National Institute for Experimental Arts & ARC Centre of Excellence for Dynamics of Language