Inspired Paintings Take Shape for NAIDOC Week Exhibition
Boys from Christ Church’s Indigenous Student Programme will exhibit their original artwork in the School’s Old Boys’ Gallery during NAIDOC Week next month. Senior School art teacher Gisela Züchner-Mogall has led the boys in a series of workshops, which are producing inspired results.
Mrs Züchner-Mogall, together with Indigenous Students’ Liaison Officer Jamie Foster, has encouraged the 16 boarders to create their own paintings for NAIDOC celebrations. In the Term 1 holidays, Mr Foster asked the boys to find out about the stories, animals, symbols and colours relating to their family group and the origin of their land. “It was important for the boys to speak with older family members or friends with respect to copyright and about which animals, symbols and colours they were allowed to use,” he said.
Over the past two weeks, Mrs Züchner-Mogall has been running the art sessions in the evenings and some class time in preparation for the event. “In the first session, we looked through art books for the boys to get a sense of what kinds of work they connected with,” she said. “I asked them to think about where they come from and who their people are, whether they wanted to paint a story or make a statement using traditional and/or contemporary painting styles.”
Mrs Züchner-Mogall said she was blown away by the boys’ response and engagement in the art sessions. “When I told them it was time to pack up at the end of the first session – there was resounding disappointment! They have been so focused and engaged throughout the whole process. It has been a really wonderful experience.”
Accompanying each boy’s painting will be a description of the story behind the artwork and their homeland. “The boys enjoyed talking to family members and friends during last holidays to learn more about their rich culture and where they come from, which you can see in the results of their work.”
At assembly during NAIDOC Week, the boys will also give the Senior School insights into their homeland and paintings when they present some of their favourite images of from home. “We hope that this exhibition and presentation will be a significant contribution to bringing a small part of the boys’ rich indigenous culture a little closer to our Christ Church community,” Mr Foster said.
The exhibition will run from Tuesday 5 July to Friday 8 July in the Old Boys’ Gallery and all members of the Christ Church community are welcome to attend.