Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Program
The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Program of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade:
- develops projects and initiatives that underline the important contributions of Australia's Indigenous peoples through their involvement in the arts, business, industry and professional fields
- displays exhibitions owned or leased by DFAT, throughout the world
Touring Visual Arts Exhibitions
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has a long and proud history of touring Indigenous visual arts. The department partners with the Commonwealth art repository, Artbank, to tour many of these exhibitions.
Australian Journey Festival, Havana, Cuba
26 January – 24 February 2012
The Australian Journey Festival is the first Australian visual arts festival to tour to Havana, Cuba.
The festival presents BALGO: Contemporary Australian Art from the Balgo Hills as its centrepiece, and includes exhibitions by renowned Indigenous photographer, Wayne Quilliam, and Victorian artist, Maree Clarke, who has worked to reinvigorate Koori ceremonial practices in South Eastern Australia.
The festival is supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Office of the Historian, in Havana, Cuba, and the Cuban Embassy in Australia.
BALGO: Contemporary Australian Art from the Balgo Hills
The spectacular works brought together in the BALGO exhibition convey the energy and dynamism of the culture of the mainly Kukatja language-speaking artists at the Warlayirti Artists Art Centre in the Balgo Hills region. This exhibition of contemporary paintings and etchings presents a range of stories that demonstrate the strong connection Aboriginal people have with their traditions and the ways in which they are being maintained today.
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, in conjunction with the Commonwealth art repository, Artbank, has been proud to tour this exciting exhibition throughout its global network of diplomatic missions.
BALGO has been presented in more than 26 countries since 2009, engaging audiences in the Asia Pacific and Latin America. From 26 January - 24 February 2012, BALGO will form the centrepiece of the Australian Journey Festival in Havana, Cuba.
Message Stick: Indigenous Identity in Urban Australia
Message Stick features a selection of significant work from the Artbank collection by eleven Indigenous artists living in urban areas throughout Australia. The works are personal, provocative and at the forefront of contemporary art practice.
Mr Rudd launched the exhibition during NAIDOC week 2011. Since then, Message Stick has toured the Pacific and will be the first Australian visual arts exhibition to tour Africa extensively. Message Stick will be presented in Cape Town, The Seychelles, Port Louis, Harare, Nairobi and Abuja.
Manager, Indigenous Programs
Phone: 02 6261 9669