In the last indigenous triennial Danie Mellor greeted me with 3 mosaic kangaroos titled Red White and Blue. Behind them a leafless tree of stuffed budgies. The images stuck in my mind and it was with that excitement and remembering Jan Billy Can that I went to see this years National Indigenous triennial: unDisclosed.
I had come from the Eugene Von Guerard exhibition on at the same time – a colonial painter. I love Von Guerard’s work but the indigenous works were all the more potent afterwards. Danie Mellor this time around had produced large paintings laden with symbolism.
I found that I was drawn to the work of Lindsay Harris Rocks with Blood and the work of indigenous sculptor, Bob Burruwul. Maybe it’s the stories connected to the pole-like men and the Wurum fishing spirit.
In place of Jan Billy Can whose work 3 years ago had left me gob-smacked, I saw Sally Gabori. I love her large coloured canvases but somehow the NGA had given them the ample room that I had not seen before. They need space.
Three years ago it was about colour for me, this time it was about space.