The Indigenous Art Centre Alliance (IACA) has partnered with the National Museum of Australia (NMA) to present the exhibition Belonging; Stories from Far North Queensland in Canberra in 2022. The exhibition will feature works from the recently acquired collection of 415 artworks from IACA member art centres produced during the IACA coordinated, national award-winning, multi-year Belonging/Northern Disclosure arts development project.
IACA is the peak body that supports, trains, promotes and advocates for remote Queensland art centres. To accompany the exhibition and coinciding with its tenth anniversary, IACA has produced Belonging; Stories from Far North Queensland a 240-page, full colour publication chronicling the works of art, artists and art centres of the far north Queensland region. Slated to become the seminal text on contemporary Indigenous art-making in far north Queensland, the publication is an important companion to the exhibition as well as a significant standalone legacy document and vital record of recent history of Queensland art centres and the Belonging/Northern Disclosure arts development project.
The book includes introductory remarks from Mathew Trinca, Director of the NMA addressing the significance and acquisition of the Belonging collection, a historical background to art centres of the Far North Queensland region by Industry expert Tim Acker and an overview of the first 10 years of the Indigenous Art Centre Alliance by outgoing Manager Pam Bigelow.
Articles by workshop facilitators Edwina Circuitt, Rebecca Dagnall and Curtis Taylor describe personal insights and anecdotes behind the scenes of the Belonging/Northern Disclosure workshops and the essay by NMA senior Indigenous curator Shona Coyne unwraps the lasting legacy of the project as revealed through the lens of the exhibition.
Dedicated chapters profiling each art centre involved in the project celebrate their uniqueness and superbly showcase the artworks while unpacking the personal stories of the artists. Comprising various media including painting, weaving, fluorescent installations, ceramics, sculptures, film and photography, the artworks share what are largely, previously untold stories and perspectives on history, experiences, culture, issues and life from artists in these remote Indigenous communities.
The IACA Belonging/Northern Disclosure artist-led project started out as an exercise in professional development and evolved into one of the most important museum acquisitions in the country. The story will expose and cement the artists from the Far North Queensland region in the national consciousness.
The publication is sponsored by the Gordon Darling Foundation and supported by the National Museum of Australia.
The book is available for sale HERE and via gallery shops for $55.
Main image credit: Belonging; Stories from Far North Queensland book. Images courtesy of Ellikon Fine Printers