Kinship - An exhibition of North QLD Indigenous Art

Kinship - An exhibition of North QLD Indigenous Art was one of the very first projects undertaken by the newly incorporated Indigenous Art Centre Alliance (IACA), in 2013.

Kinship was a major exhibition celebrating the exceptional traditional and contemporary artwork created in Cape York and the Torres Strait Islands. Kinship, aimed to deliver art steeped in culture and tradition, yet reflecting contemporary art practices by artists stimulated by their environments, identity and heritage. The regional diversity in approach towards creating artwork was on full display as artworks of various different media - paintings, wood carvings, weaving and ceramics were all showcased.

The exhibition title Kinship was chosen as it represented the connections between the Indigenous art centres and artists in Cape York and the Torres Strait Islands. It reflected the shared experiences of working collaboratively with both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people through IACA and its objectives.

Kinship offered four main components:

Kinship Prelude Exhibition (Cairns Institute; 8 - 31 July 2013) Celebrating the opening of the new Cairns Institute building at James Cook University, this exhibition was a selection of works brought together by the thirteen IACA member art centres. The combination of 2D and 3D artworks were curated to complement the unique space of the Cairns Institute building.

Kinship Exhibition (Tanks Arts Centre; 9 – 21 August 2013) This was an extension of the exhibition shown in the Cairns Institute. The vast and unique Tanks Arts Centre venue allowed for a more extensive exhibition with more representational works from known and emerging artists from IACA member art centres.

Kinship Indigenous Art Market (Tanks Arts Centre; 10 August 2013) With the Cairns Indigenous Art Fair (CIAF) in its transitional year, this market located in the gardens of Tanks Arts Centre gave art centres an outlet to sell their artists’ works.

IACA symposium (Centre of Contemporary Arts; 14 August 2013) The symposium offered audiences discussions by a variety of artists and arts industry leaders around the broad spectrum of issues facing art centres.

The exhibitions, symposium and art market were a result of an invitation by Cairns Institute to IACA to exhibit art from its member art centres, adding to the celebration and opening of the new headquarters of Cairns Institute at James Cook University. The 2013 hiatus of CIAF opened the door for IACA to exhibit at the Tanks Arts Centre.

“There is a continued art market interest in the Far North Queensland (FNQ) region and collectors and curators are always looking to the next ‘new thing’ to discover. Now is the time for FNQ art centres to focus on and deliver quality standards of art practice, supported through the IACA network”.

Pam Bigelow

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IACA programs and events receive financial assistance from the Queensland Government through the Arts Queensland Backing Indigenous Arts initiative, from the Federal Government’s Ministry for the Arts through the Indigenous Visual Arts Industry Support program, the Australia Council for the Arts and Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand (RISE) Fund - an Australian Government initiative. IACA supports the Indigenous Art Code.

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