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NAIDOC Week 2013 Panel Discussion

Join us at the MCA for the key event of our NAIDOC Week program. This important panel discussion celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Yirrkala bark petitions, highlighting the achievements and important history of this event and recognising the work of its Aboriginal trailblazers.


Featuring on the panel:

Wanyubi Marika
Wanyubi Marika is the son of Milirrpum Marika brother of Mawalan I, and Reverend Liyapadiny Marika of the Rirratjingu clan and one of the leading figures in the historic Gove Land Rights case. Wanyubi has worked in community management since the 1980s and in the 1990s was the leader of the Yirrkala Dhanbul Community Association Council. Wanyubi first started painting seriously for a wider public when he contributed to Buku-Larrngay Mulka Arts exhibition Saltwater – Yirrkala Bark Paintings of Sea Country, which toured the country in 1999–2001. Wanyubi learnt to paint from senior members of his Rirratjingu clan and continued to develop his skills as an artist while living with his wife’s family at Yilkpara in Madarrpa clan country in Blue Mud Bay. Wanyubi has gained recognition for his bark paintings and is represented in public and private collections around the country. He is represented by Buku Larrnggay Mulka Arts, Yirrkala, and Annandale Galleries, Sydney.


Aden Ridgeway
Aden Ridgeway was born in Macksville in northern NSW and is a proud member of the Gumbayyngirr people. He has been a park ranger, court assessor, chief executive officer and federal politician. Aden is the first Indigenous person to be elected as a Parliamentary Leader when he held the position of Deputy Leader, Australian Democrats, during 2001-02. He retired as a Senator for NSW having served in the Federal Parliament for six years. Aden is currently Executive Chairman of Indigenous Tourism Australia and Adjunct Professor, UTS, Sydney. He also Chairs Bangarra Dance Theatre, the NSW Reparations Repayments Scheme Panel and the Federal Government’s Remote Enterprise Centre; is a Trustee for the Rio Tinto Aboriginal Fund; and is the Patron of The Centre for Aboriginal Independence and Enterprise. Aden currently works as a consultant to various organisations, including the NSW Aboriginal Land Council and Maari Ma Aboriginal Health Corporation.


Djon Mundine
Djon Mundine is a leading curator, writer and art historian. His has worked as Senior Curator, Gallery of Aboriginal Australia, National Museum of Australia, Canberra, Senior Curator of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Programs at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney and as Art Advisor for the Ramingining Community of Central Arnhem Land, NT for 16 years. Djon has held curatorial positions at the Art Gallery of NSW and Queensland Art Gallery. He has curated many important exhibitions including Tyerabarrbowaryaou (I shall never become a white man); Native Title, Bark Paintings from Yirrkala; Yolngu Science; The Native Born; Objects and Representations from Ramingining; They are Meditating: Bark Paintings from the MCA’s Arnott’s Collection which were all presented at the Museum of Contemporary Art. He is renowned as the concept curator for the Aboriginal Memorial installation permanently exhibited at the National Gallery of Australia and was awarded an OAM in 1993. Djon is currently an independent curator and writer.


FREE, drop-in


Image courtesy and © Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, photograph James Brown

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