I see weaving as a metaphor for the continuation of Indigenous culture; threads of the past leading to the present, continuing and evolving. Unfortunately through colonisation, there was significant damage, cut and torn fibres, twine unravelled and techniques lost, yet Indigenous culture is perpetual. There is an opportunity to understand social and historical impacts, repair, revive traditions and re-stitch. By merging the old ways with the new, we can forge a stronger sense of cultural pride.
The artwork is interactive as you need to hold on to threads to activate a video clips. The technology supports the concept of connection, as it is people’s involvement that completes an electrical circuit which triggers various visuals. Without interaction the work becomes stagnant but it but can re-awakened as the threads are picked up again. The combination of visual layers and woven fibres create a new and emergent artwork.
This work was inspired by the Yunggaire weavers as they shared stories and spoke about re-connecting with the old weaving traditions. The wall hanging was hand woven from the coiling technique and threads were twisted or twined. These techniques were captured on video and this documentation became the digital projection element of the artwork.
Gathering Strands exhibition at Redland Art Gallery 2016.
Excerpt from Gathering Strands catalogue by Freja Carmichael.