Foundation / WHLS 2010

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Foundation: Project team

The Foundation multimedia and performance project was conceived by Cindi Drennan (Director of illuminart) in 2008. To support the venture, Illuminart employed Dyonne Barberie as project coordinator and Nigel Glassey as researcher/writer. Their initial research led to connections with a group of supporters, consultants, volunteers and partners who became involved in developing the project.

The acknowledgement of the Stolen Generation in public apology by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, and project input by Indigenous family history consultant Elise Anthony in 2010 led to a strong direction for the project to connect with contemporary issues particularly for the Stolen Generation. In 2010 some funding from the Blue Mountains City Council supported creative development of the project which led to performance and narrative development and a showing in early 2011. Illuminart discontinued the project in mid 2011 as other developments arose taking it in different directions.

Below are introductions to the businesses and individuals who have been involved in the project.

Cindi Drennan, Medlow Bath: Producer / Multimedia Artist
Creative produer and projection artist with experience in managing community arts projects around Australia. Cindi is also the owner / manager of Illuminart which supported the project with funding / auspicing assistance, promotion, multimedia services, and producing expertise.

Elise Anthony, Lawson: Aboriginal Family History Researcher, Indigenous Consultant (Ngunawal Nation)
Elise is a researcher with experience in assisting Indigenous and non-indigenous people locate their Aboriginal ancestry and trace family histories. Elise has worked with Link Up, an organisation that supports people to reconnect with their family. Elise now has her own business  – Australian Family Tree Services –  to support the growing demand for these services.  The topic of reconnection with ancestry is a key theme of the stories and Elise provides advice about geneological resources, research methodologies, and her own knowledge and stories to assist in the character and story development.

Nigel Glassey, Blackheath
Researcher / Writer / director / composer
Nigel has a background in arts and music, with a PhD in literature and has tutored post-colonial theory at both Sydney University and UNSW.  Nigel has directed a number of collaborative performance projects in the Blue Mountains including the successful Sacred Earth Spectacular developed and presented at the Footbeat festival in 2009. Nigel was the key writer, researcher and composer/arranger for the project.

Ken Bromilow, Blackheath:
Actor / Performance collaborator
Ken is a professional actor with a lifetime of experience in both stage and screen. Ken’s career has included life on the land and he has authentic knowledge of the type of life of the central character Lightin’ Stone. Ken collaborated with the team during the development, to explore the possibilities of a narrative in which live performance and multimedia are integrated.

Jacinta Tobin, Katoomba: Aboriginal Activist / Singer / Songwriter / Consultant. (Darug Nation)
Jacinta has been well respected as one of the leading figures of the Blue Mountains ACRC and has a position with National Parks in a role to enable the service to understand and integrate indigenous practice. Jacinta is ready to launch her second CD, the first being “Yarramundi and the Four Leaf Clover.” Jacinta has provided creative input into the project development.

Chris Harrison. Blackheath. Indigenous consultant (Wiradjiri Nation).
Chris Harrison is a visual artist who has received a Redgate residency in a Chinese village studying ancient forms of representation and practice. Previous to that she was selected as an Australian artist to work and exhibit at the Babayon International Cultural Centre in Turkey. Chris was a lecturer at UWS in the Aboriginal rural education program. She has been a teacher at TAFE for eighteen years as an adult literacy officer, and has worked across the Aboriginal culture program. Prior to that Chris was a Northern Territory high school principal and also a schools education consultant. She has been of great support to others in the community on their journey home.

Ian RT Colless, New York / Katoomba. Indigenous consultant (Gundungurra Nation).
Ian is a Dancer/Choreographer who grew up in the Blue Mountains with a collaboration of Gundungurra and Irish heritage. Between 2008 and 2009 he was rewarded The Foundation for Young Australians National Indigenous Youth Leadership Program Tertiary Scholarship. He wrote a 1st class thesis on the subject matter of fusion of First Australian dance with western modern dance, which has now been published for Edith Cowen University in Western Australia. He is a professional dancer and emerging choreographer who has worked nationally and internationally. Ian is currently based in New York performing a practical training internship with Jonathan Hollander’s Battery Dance Company. This project has been assisted by the Australia Council for the Arts, arts advisory body. Ian maintains connections with his family and community in the Blue Mountains via skype, phone, and email.

Dyonne Barbarie, Blackheath
Researcher / Admin Assistant
Dyonne supported the project with correspondence, coordination and administrative assistance.

LINKS: Resources and interviews about Mission life. Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation. Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies. Includes Genealogical database. UWS centre for Indigenous Education, including university courses, resources and support for UWS students. Blue Mountains Historical Society, promoting community interest in history of the Blue Mountains and history in general. Website established by Bureau of Meteorology to collect and disseminate Indigenous knowledge about the weather and seasons. Homepage of artist and teacher and foundation consultant Chris Harrison featuring samples of her art.

Close the Gap. Social Justice organisation focusing on Indigenous health outcomes. Eniar promotes awareness on indigenous issues and provides information for Indigenous Australians about Europe and international organisations. Gumala Aboriginal Corporation oversees programs and projects for Indigenous self-development and self-determination. Internet homepage for the 1997 government report including download link, ‘Bringing them Home: The ‘Stolen’ children report.’ Website of historical information featuring the Hartley and Lithgow regions West of the Blue Mountains. State Government arm of genealogical services and support for Indigenous on their journey home.

Michael Organ research website A bibliography of works dedicated to original Australian indigenous narratives, tales, mythologies. Homepage for oral, online interviews collected in researching the ‘Bringing them Home: The ‘Stolen’ children report.’ (1997) An online guide to manuscripts, pictures and oral histories in the National Library of Australia relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Historic society with focus on the history and the heritage of the mid mountains. The Migration Heritage Centre identifies, records, preserves and interprets the heritage of migration and settlement in the State of New South Wales, Australia from 1788 to the present day. N.S.W. body that strives to raise awareness and understanding of reconciliation and Indigenous issues, advocating for social justice, equity and Indigenous Rights and growing and supporting the people’s movement for reconciliation. Students from five schools in the Penrith area interviewed migrants and refugees living locally and 17 were collated in a book of the Penrith Migrant and Refugee Stories Project, which is downloadable in a free ebook form from the link on this page. Non profit national organisation building and promoting reconciliation between Indigenous and non-indigenous Australians. Archival collection of historical material around Sydney cove. National Aboriginal Cultural Institute. Teaching resource to help students think about heritage in N.S.W. Extensive Website about the Aboriginal Sovereignty movement. Historical records and reproductions of first fleet astronomer Lieutenant William Dawes, the first European to transcribe Australian Indigenous language. Working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and their Communities. Information and guidelines about co-working with Indigenous communities.