NAIDOC Week • Reflections

This week (4 July – 11 July) is NAIDOC Week when we celebrates the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples. Each day this week, we’re sharing an artwork and reflection by Glenn Loughrey, Wiradjuri man, Artist & Anglican Priest.

Day 1 • Alice Springs Dreaming

Alice Springs is a place of two dreamings – the caterpillar and the wild dog. The former responsible for the hills around the town and the other a story of bravery. The landscape around the town seen from the air reveals lines in the sand something akin to Adams ribs.

Day 2 • Everywhere, When

There is no past present and future in Aboriginal thought. All three coalesce into now. In this sketch we have time in the centre between two trees – the tree we are born under out of the ground and the one we are buried under and go back into the ground, adding to the repository of wisdom held there. The figures under the two trees represent the journey we as people make.

Day 3 • Moon over Mudgee

All tribal Aboriginal people in the Mudgee, NSW area were exterminated by 1876 after a call for this to occur by William Cox some 50 years earlier. This painting represents the clash of two cultures and the truth that we remain both on top of and embedded in the country.

Day 4 • Naarm – Always Was Always Will Be Kulin.

This painting reflects the culture north of the Birrarung prior to colonization. It is depicted by the river, meeting places, manna gums, kangaroos and our people walking in it. Waa flies above the river watching over it.

Day 5 • Stealing Water, Stealing Life

This represents the changes made to our landscape and cultures by colonisation. This painting represents the damage done to the Barka (Darling River) and its impact on the Barkindji people at Wilcannia, NSW.

Day 6 • Walking Into Country

A collection of traditional motifs and symbols depicting country. It is an invitation to walk country and discover what is held within it.

About Glenn Loughrey

Glenn Loughrey is a Wiradjuri man from NSW and a priest at St. Oswald’s Anglican Church, Glen Iris. He is an artist who fuses Indigenous art styles with Western forms of story telling. In this exhibition he presents a collection of acrylic paintings reflecting the diversity of Indigenous identity and its disconnect from the dominant culture. He explores his own journey of discovery to reclaim the sense of country on a personal and community level.