Saying No: Reconciling Spirituality and Resistance in Indigenous Australian Art

Posted filed under Australia, Shows.

A very interesting show is on at the MoCADA in Brooklyn right now: “MoCADA is committed to fostering a greater awareness and appreciation of the arts and cultures of the African Diaspora as it relates to contemporary urban issues. The experiences and cultural contributions of people of African descent have been marginalized throughout history and MoCADA’s mission is to undertake the responsibility of rewriting that history in order to give a more accurate portrayal of the contributions of people of African descent to the artistic and global landscape.”

Image above: Fiona Foley: HHH

Indigenous Australians are not from Africa, but the MoCADA still seems to be the right place for this show of contemporary Aboriginal art, still one of the hottest “trends” the art market has to offer right now:

“The word “No” does not exist in the majority of the over 200 Australian Aboriginal languages, and where it does exist, this powerful word is reserved for the elders and is used with great care and ceremony. As these languages reach the brink of extinction, indigenous Australian artists are using contemporary art to assert their identity and culture and say no to racism, land theft and colonialism in an urban world. With this, MoCADA announces the opening of the highly anticipated international group exhibition entitled, Saying No: Reconciling Spirituality and Resistance in Indigenous Australian Art.

The exhibition is guest curated by Bindi Cole, and will be on view from August 11 through November 6, 2011 in the museum’s main gallery at the James E. Davis 80 Arts Building in Brooklyn, New York. Saying No features sculpture, installation, painting, photography, video and mixed media works that highlight the use of visual art as a form of social and political protest in the current Australian Aboriginal struggle for the right to representation.”

Read on at MOCADA

More from Artopia: “The original Australians had art; they had the Dreamtime religion. And it is certain they had languages. At the time of Western contact — perhaps we should call it the European invasion — there were at least 300 languages and 600 dialects, one and sometimes two languages to a nation. Now only 15 are spoken. Some dialects are “mother-in-law languages” — words you use only when around a close and a particularly frightening relative — and mourning languages, so restricted in vocabulary that sign language had to be invented to complement them.

Please leave the room. Sorry, my grandma died so I can only say “please” and have to make gestures for “leave,” for “the,” and “room.” But what is a “room”?” Read the whole story.

MoCADA’s Saying No Film Festival Live Performance by Cameron McCarthy

At the premier of The Saying No Film Festival presented by The Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts (MoCADA), renowned Australian Aboriginal musician Cameron McCarthy gives a live performance with the didgeridoo.