Selling Yarns 2

Innovation for sustainability



How the Knowledge within Country informs Aboriginal arts practices and affirms and sustains Identity

Session: Sustainability and the use of materials Friday 6 March 2009 1:00 - 2:10pm

Bronwyn Fredericks

Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, Monash University


Australian Aboriginal peoples have a long history of relationships connected to Country: Australia's landscapes and seascapes and all the animals and plants and peoples that inhibit them. With an increasing shift of Aboriginal people to large urban areas and regional centres it does mean that many Aboriginal Australians now pass through, dwell, and live within the Country belonging to other Aboriginal Australians. This does not mean that one's connections to Country are lost, or that the significance of Country is no longer present.

Pamela Croft and Bronwyn Fredericks live within Rockhampton region of Central Queensland: the Countries of the Darumbal (mainland and coastline) and the Woppaburra (Keppel Islands), who are intricately linked through history and relationship within Country. Within broader Australia, this region is marketed as the 'Beef Capital of Australia' and where 'the beef meets the reef' (Great Barrier Reef). It is also at the southern end of one of the world's greatest wonders; the World Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef.

This presentation will demonstrate how the knowledge base from within the Countries of the Darumbal and Woppaburra can and does inform land- centred artistic crafts practice in the every day and enables a focus on cultural sustainability for the Indigenous and non-Indigenous generations to come.

See also: Bronwyn Fredericks's biography