(c) Bradley Brown 2012 Grandmother
New work by principal artists Charlotte (Penny) Hood, Bradley Brown and Cassie Harrap of the East Gippsland Aboriginal Arts Corporation. From Tue 05 Feb to Fri 15 Mar. Official opening: Tue 5 Feb at 6.30pm.
Mixing traditional culture with contemporary elements, Aboriginal artists Charlotte (Penny) Hood (Kurnai), Bradley Brown (Gunai Kurnai Bidawal) and Cassie Harrap (Taungurung Wurundjeri) reinterpret landscape and what it is like living in the country today.
Their distinctly different styles, Penny’s signature bright colours, Brad’s strong spiritual influence and Cassie’s deeply emotional work complement each other and fuse together into a thought provoking yet delightful show.
Gunai Kurnai Bidawal
Bradley Brown lives in Bairnsdale with his wife and four children. His tribes are the Gunai Kurnai Bidawal descending from his mother’s side and the Gunditjmara tribe from his father’s side.
“My style of painting is contemporary mixed with traditional Aboriginal art. I am also a Christian and paint what I have seen and experienced throughout my life. I have been painting for about five years, self taught but have a lot of respect for my traditional Aboriginal art and culture with the symbols and stories.”
Brad has had two solo exhibitions in Melbourne and at EGAAC and also been a finalist in the Prestigious Victorian Indigenous Art Awards 2011. He has exhibited in a number of group exhibitions throughout Victoria and considers himself an established artist. He has had his artwork exhibited in a number of magazines, books, calendars etc.
“I have a strong passion for painting and the stories I tell through my art, I also enjoy people’s reaction to my paintings which keep me motivated and I look forward to my future in art and where it will take me.”
Cassie Harrap belongs to the Yeerun-Illam-Balug clan of the Taungurung people and the Wurundjeri people.
From a young age Cassie demonstrated a talent in painting with a variety of mediums and each artwork is highly expressive and a unique original.
Cassie has grown up in Gippsland and has two daughters. It is family that inspires and motivates Cassie and this shows in her artwork.
"I feel I have an ongoing responsibility to keep our culture alive and through my artwork and workshops I hope I am contributing to this."
Charlotte (Penny) Hood
Charlotte Hood or Penny as she is called by family and friends was born in Orbost, then moved to Nowa Nowa, Bruthen and now resides in Bairnsdale. She is a proud Kurnai woman, strong in her culture, as is evident in her art.
“I paint because it makes me feel good – it eases my soul.”
Penny is influenced by her cultural heritage, her memories and critical events. A prolific artist, it is not unusual for Penny to work throughout the night especially after returning from visits with her Aunty who inspires her with stories from the old days. Penny reminisces: ‘It’s good to remember when life was fun’.
Through an eclectic mix of styles, the telling of stories is a common theme in Penny’s work. Penny enjoys experimenting with different ways to share the stories she carries in her mind, memory, heart and soul.
Her paintings and wood burnings typically include cultural symbols such as shields, boomerangs, baskets and the Kurnai totem - the Blue Wren. Scenes from the Lake Tyers mission and from the early years, with family themes are also common. Some works, such as those of old and young fellas sitting by river banks, peacefully co-existing with various animals and plants, are whimsical and bring a sense of calm to both artist and viewer.
East Gippsland Aboriginal Arts Corporation was officially established in 1997 as the first Aboriginal arts corporation in Victoria by a group of enthusiastic Koori artists and performers to protect their culture and develop their skills and artistic talents.
The key principle of the corporation is to ensure independence and self-determination in the presentation, practice, marketing and sales of local Koori arts and crafts.
EGAAC continues to grow and build its reputation as a strong artist supporter. EGAAC provides studio space and a range of workshops for members of all skill levels to explore a broad range of visual and performance art.
This exhibition has been made possible with the support of:
Indigenous Visuals Arts Industry
Support, Alliance Française de Melbourne, City of Port Philip and is part of Yalukit Wilum Ngargee Indigenous Arts & Cultural Festival 2-11 February 2013
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