Stolen Generations’ voices preserved at National Library

Posted February 13, 2018 12:13:40

Judith Stubbs was just two when she and her five sisters were taken from extended family at the Brewarrina Mission and sent to the Cootamundra Aboriginal Girls Training Home.

Her two older brothers were removed to Kinchela. The year was 1943.

Nearly 60 years later Judith recorded her story, breaking down in tears as she recounted the pain of the physical and sexual abuse she endured in the home, and the “brainwashing” against her Indigenous heritage.

“The blacks didn’t want you and the whites didn’t want you,” she said.

“You sit on that fence all your life.”

Judith died in 2016 but her story has been preserved in a unique audio archive at the National Library of Australia (NLA).

Her daughter Rebecca Bateman is the NLA’s newly-appointed Indigenous curator and she said she was determined to make stories such as her mother’s more publicly available.

“Listening to my mum’s story reminds me of what a strong and articulate woman and clever woman she was,” Ms Bateman said.

“She was very passionate about making sure Australia knew what had happened.”

In her oral history, Judith recounted screaming and running away when “an old black man” appeared outside her primary school, calling out to her and her sister Lorraine.

“We were told that [the blacks] were all drunks and no good,” she said.

Years later she learnt that the man was her grandfather.

She never saw him again.

“He must have been absolutely determined to get the girls back,” Ms Bateman said.

“To have that kind of reaction — even though maybe on some level he would have understood where it was coming from — it still would have been really heartbreaking I imagine.”

Oral histories followed royal commission

More than 300 people — survivors and administrators of the child removal policy — were interviewed between 1998 and 2002 for the Bringing Them Home Oral History Project.

A shorter series of follow up recordings was made in 2010, two years after Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s apology to the Stolen Generations.

Ten years on from the apology, Ms Bateman has vivid memories of the day.

“Mum didn’t actually … want to come down to Canberra … to the live apology … she thought it would be too much for her,” she said.

“So I went to her place in Sydney and we sat there and watched it on the TV — both bawled our eyes out.”

At the time, Judith was ambivalent about the apology, wondering what it would mean to her on a day-to-day basis.

“There was some reluctance to accept it for what it was,” Ms Bateman said.

“Although obviously on an emotional level it did mean an enormous amount to her to have that acknowledgement that … yes, this happened.”

Ms Bateman said the oral histories were an important record of recent Australian history and a way to foster understanding.

“There’s still a lot of people who think that all the bad things that happened to Aboriginal people happened 200 years ago,” Ms Bateman said.

“While those misconceptions linger there’s never going to be a full, proper understanding between the entire community.”

A selection of the oral histories are available to listen to online.

Topics: indigenous-aboriginal-and-torres-strait-islander, indigenous-policy, library-museum-and-gallery, history, human-interest, canberra-2600

Folding umbrella’s ‘flirtatious’ history never forgotten

Posted February 10, 2018 09:00:40

February 10 is World Umbrella Day, an occasion not typically marked by raucous celebrations but one always remembered in Melbourne’s east.

In East Malvern is the former home and studios of Karl and Slawa Duldig, which is now a museum of their impressive artwork including bronzes by Karl, a renowned modernist sculptor.

It also holds an early prototype of an Austrian-invented folding, collapsible umbrella.

Slawa Duldig invented and patented the umbrella design in 1928 when she was still Slawa Horowitz.

Both Polish-born, she and Karl met while studying sculpture in Vienna.

The two would frequently draw together on Sundays in the surrounds of the Kunsthistorisches Museum.

Their daughter Eva, who founded the Duldig museum, said it was on one of the drawing excursions that Slawa came up with the idea for the folding umbrella.

Writing before her death in 1975, Slawa recalled that it was a rainy May day in 1928.

“I armed myself with a big umbrella and muttered to myself: ‘Why on Earth must I carry this utterly clumsy thing? Can’t they invent a small folding umbrella which could be easily carried in a bag?'”

She went home and spent some time coming up with her design.

A prototype was built with parts from watchmakers, and she made sure not to buy too many parts from any one place.

“She didn’t want anyone to cotton on that she was doing this umbrella thing,” Eva said.

The ‘magic umbrella’

Slawa obtained a patent for her invention in 1928 and successfully licensed the design to manufacturers in Austria and Germany.

Patents for folding, telescopic umbrellas date back to at least 1896 but Slawa’s improvements were elegant.

She simplified the folding mechanism, allowing the whole umbrella to be smaller and more practical.

The umbrella went on the market with an unusual name.

“The little umbrella was called Flirt, which was very with it,” Eva said.

“It was still seen as quite a luxury item; it was beautifully finished and made out of nice materials.”

The Flirt was featured at the 1931 Inventor’s Fair in Vienna, with the press describing it as “the magic umbrella of the sculptress”.

Slawa married Karl that same year and her business helped to fund their new life together.

“She was able to furnish the whole house with this beautiful customised art furniture made by a very well-known firm in Vienna,” Eva said.

Secret stowaways

Slawa gave birth to Eva on February 11, 1938, one month before the Nazis marched into Austria.

The young family fled via Switzerland, but under pressure from the Nazis Slawa sold her rights to the umbrella to company Brüder Wüster.

She was, however, able to evade the authorities and secretly put the umbrella prototypes into storage.

Eva’s book Driftwood tells the remarkable story of how her parents escaped Austria and wound up in Australia while keeping their possessions hidden from the Nazis.

She said she applied an important lesson from her mother while writing their history.

“Even though I was writing the book for 40 years, I didn’t tell anyone … I kept it quiet until it was out.”

Topics: inventions, 20th-century, design, history, people, human-interest, malvern-east-3145, melbourne-3000

Convict life wasn’t all floggings and shackles — they also danced

By Heather Blasdale Clarke

Posted February 01, 2018 12:56:14

Our perceptions about life as a convict in colonial Australia have been influenced by propaganda from previous generations.

The image of the shackled convict, constantly flogged and leading a horrible, degraded existence comes from Marcus Clarke’s novel For the Term of His Natural Life, reinforced by Robert Hughes in The Fatal Shore.

Research has shown that only hardened criminals were chained and repeatedly flogged.

Life was harsh at times, but for the majority of convicts theirs was a fairly normal existence. Most lived in huts or houses, wore ordinary clothing and worked in regular occupations with time allowed for recreation. This is where a need for relaxation becomes apparent.

A vibrant popular culture

Popular culture was quickly established in the colony and this included music and dance for the common people. Visitors to the colony in 1820s reported on the large number of public houses where dancing took place and a French visitor remarked on the “excessive” amount of leisure time the convicts enjoyed.

Dance was an important aspect of social life at the time the colony was founded, and every one, rich and poor, young and old, loved to dance.

In the 18th century, the English were renowned as a nation of dancers and this was also the case in Ireland and Scotland — all places where convicts originated — and the tunes were often an expression of rebellion.

Traditional dance histories have focused on the court, ballet and theatrical dance with little regard for social dances popular with the masses.

New approaches in academic research have opened the way to examine the lives, ideas and experiences of those whose stories have been lost in the dominant historical narratives. By combining theory and dance practice, additional understandings of this fascinating subject have been revealed. It has been crucial in exploring the lost culture of convict music and dance in the early colony.

Not just floggings and misery

Prior to transportation, dancing was allowed in prisons and on some of the hulks (prison ships) which housed convicts.

On the ships which transported the convicts to the colony, it was common for the surgeons, charged with the welfare of the convicts, to encourage dancing. It was recognized as an activity promoting physical and psychological well-being.

Surgeon John Smith on the convict ship Surry wrote in 1834:

The men were exercised as much as possible, dancing, acting plays, ‘sky larking’ and marching about were daily employment.

In the colony, reports about dancing come from a completely different source. Although it was not an illegal activity, many of the associated circumstances were, so one of the main sources of information is the police reports published in the local newspapers.

If convicts were absent without permission, in unlicensed premises, or creating a racket after hours, they could be in trouble with the law. Invariably, if they were partying, dancing would be involved.

Despite the laws it was impossible to stop people enjoying themselves.

The type of dancing was the English country dance, a form which had spread throughout the British Isles, the most popular type of dance since Shakespeare’s time. Within the dance there were opportunities for virtuoso stepping, but even the humblest dancer could stomp to their heart’s content.

Dances could be enjoyed by groups of men or women or in mixed company, so despite the segregation of genders on convict ships, dancing was not inhibited.

Transports of delight

A key benefit of this dance-form is its social nature — you and your partner dance with everyone in the room. It is an egalitarian dance that give equal opportunities. The gender roles are not significantly different and within the dance, everyone has an opportunity to lead.

Unlike dances for couples or individuals, it is a group dance which encourages a high degree of social interaction — eye contact, the giving of hands, moving together to lively music. As well as providing entertainment and enjoyment, it kindles socialisation and group cohesion.

Imagine being pulled away from family, friends, and a familiar way of life to be transported to the end of the world.

One of the few constants is the shared culture of dance and music, lifting you to a happier place, a reminder of jolly times and an escape from current hardships.

Dancing created a sense of belonging in the new community, a significant element in the convicts’ lives.

Heather Blasdale Clarke is completing her doctorate on Australian colonial dance at Queensland University of Technology’s Creative Industries Facility.

An exhibition is planned for Redcliffe Museum in Brisbane featuring talks, music and dance workshops and an online database is being developed. More information is available.

Topics: dance, history, australia

Father of South African jazz Hugh Masekela dies at 78

Posted January 23, 2018 21:09:29

Trumpeter and singer Hugh Masekela, known as the “father of South African jazz” who used his music in the fight against apartheid, has died at 78.

Key points:

  • Masekela’s hit Soweto Blues was a soundtrack to the anti-apartheid movement
  • Another of his songs called for the release of then-imprisoned Nelson Mandela
  • Jacob Zuma says the nation will mourn a man who “kept the torch of freedom alive”

His family said on Tuesday he died from prostate cancer.

In a career spanning more than five decades, Masekela gained international recognition with his distinctive afro-jazz sound and hits such as Soweto Blues, which served as one of the soundtracks to the anti-apartheid movement.

Following the end of white-minority rule, he opened the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup Kick-Off Concert and performed at the event’s opening ceremony in Johannesburg’s Soccer City stadium.

“Hugh’s global and activist contribution to and participation in the areas of music, theatre, and the arts in general is contained in the minds and memory of millions,” a statement on behalf of the Masekela family said.

“Rest in power, beloved, you are forever in our hearts.”

His song Bring Him Back Home (Nelson Mandela), written while Masekela was in living in exile, called for the release of the then-imprisoned Mandela and was banned by the apartheid regime.

South African President Jacob Zuma said the nation would mourn a man who “kept the torch of freedom alive”.

“It is an immeasurable loss to the music industry and to the country at large. His contribution to the struggle for liberation will never be forgotten,” Mr Zuma said in a statement.

Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa tweeted: “A baobab tree has fallen, the nation has lost a one of a kind.”

After honing his craft as a teenager, Masekela left South Africa at 21 to begin three decades in exile.

His global appeal hit new heights in 1968 when his instrumental single Grazin’ in the Grass went to number one in the US charts.

As well as close friendships with jazz legends like Miles Davis, John Coltrane and Charlie Mingus, Masekela also performed alongside stars Janis Joplin, Otis Redding and Jimi Hendrix in the 1960s.

He was married to singer and activist Miriam Makeba, known as “Mama Africa”, from 1964 to 1966.


Topics: arts-and-entertainment, music, history, community-and-society, death, south-africa

Lost and found photographs give rare glimpse into working class Australia

Posted January 22, 2018 14:50:32

A collection of striking and candid images of life in a remote mining town in the 1900s has survived time, heat and disappearing into obscurity in a dusty old shed.

The photos were taken by James Wooler, who migrated from Yorkshire, following his wife’s family to Broken Hill.

He was in the town only three or four years, between 1908 and 1911, but in that time was a prolific photographer.

The photographs he took were distributed to universities and libraries around the country, and a selection was retained in the town’s gallery and mining and minerals museum.

Senior museum officer John Fadden said the photographs were unique for their time.

“They show the working-class culture, whereas traditionally during this period the people who were photographed would have been dignitaries, mine managers,” he said.

“What we’re looking at here is a snapshot of life in the Hill.”

Through the eyes of a self-made man

The photographs are a combination of candid snaps of daily life in a mining town and composed portraits of working class families, in the style associated with wealthier classes.

Mr Fadden said that perspective would have been helped by Mr Wooler’s own working-class roots.

“He shows these people with a dignity,” he said.

“The photographer himself comes from a working-class background. His parents were both factory workers.

“He’s a self-driven person. He’s educated himself. He was taught the basics of painting and composition, and this new medium of photography has grabbed him.”

Early social media

Mr Wooler’s talent as a photographer landed him many private commissions, and he also produced candid shots as postcards, an early form of social media, Mr Fadden said.

“The way people shared things then was through postcards,” he said.

“The mines and the street parades were photographed and very shortly after turned into postcards and shared around; a very early social media.”

The subject matter is much the same as you would find on any social media account these days — weddings, children, young people coyly holding drinks at a picnic.

Six hundred photographs lost and found

Eventually Mr Wooler landed a job at the local newspaper, The Barrier Miner, where he became a pioneer of duotone image reproduction.

“This allowed The Barrier Miner to sell itself as one of the first pictorial newspapers in Australia,” Mr Fadden said.

Mr Wooler worked at the newspaper for two years before contracting typhoid, after which he moved his family to the Yorke Peninsula in South Australia, leaving all his photographs behind.

“Whether it was to do with his ill health, whether it was to do with copyright with the newspaper, he doesn’t take any of his glass plates with him,” Mr Fadden said.

“It was not until the mid-fifties 600 of his glass plates were discovered in a shed in Broken Hill.

“The dry heat of Broken Hill actually probably helped to conserve the images. The plates would have disintegrated anywhere else.”

The images were split up at the time, given to various universities and libraries around the country.

Photographs from the era by Mr Wooler are still being unearthed in the town.

“Unfortunately, a local photographer, Douglass Banks, passed away quite recently. His wife when cleaning out his studio and came across 50 glass plates that were signed by Wooler.

“There are still more out there.”

Topics: art-history, history, photography, broken-hill-2880

What the history of Hobart tells us about the area known as Wapping

Posted January 16, 2018 09:30:53

Lewd women, grisly murders, sailors drinking themselves to death and typhoid. Sounds like your typical 19th century port.

Early Hobart’s Wapping district was known as a sewer-ridden slum, but was that really the case? Who else lived there and why did it disappear?

Former Hobartian Jane Orbell-Smith, who now lives in Brisbane, wanted to know more about the slum she’d heard about when growing up in the 1970s.

So she posed the question to the ABC’s Curious Hobart team: “What is the history of the Hobart area known as Wapping?”

“When I was growing up no-one lived there. It had a reputation of being a bad slum area with dreadful crime, poverty and disease,” she said.

Curious Hobart is amonthly ABC project which invites you to have a say in the stories we cover such as the history of Hobart’s trams and whether there are secret tunnels under the city.

Where was Wapping?

The settlement sprang up around Hobart’s early wharf at Hunter Street and endured until it was almost obliterated by industrial and commercial pressures of the mid-20th century.

While it saw many phases, the profile remained one of poverty and prostitutes, housing Hobart’s poorest of the poor.

The name originated from the Wapping area in London which had a similar profile. At one time, both were the site of executions.

It was bordered by Liverpool, Campbell and Macquarie Streets and on the eastern side, Park Street, now the Brooker Highway.

The streetscapes are gone or bear little resemblance to the former layout, except for the back alleys around the Theatre Royal.

Amongst the pubs and workers’ cottages, the Theatre Royal opened in 1837 and remains Australia’s oldest working theatre.

The original building had a tavern beneath the auditorium which hosted cockfights among the mayhem of drunken revelry and prostitutes plying their trade.

Who lived there?

The people of Wapping were working class employed by the nearby factories — jam, tanneries, ice, soap, gasworks and a slaughter house among them — which were established near the Hunter Street wharf.

Robyn Everist, who has been taking tourists around Wapping since 2010, points out that while the district was poor, local services met many of their needs; milliners, a butcher, a school and even a barrister.

Wapping had its own Ragged School, a Hobart version of the free education which charities ran in Victorian England.

“The organisation which set up the school wanted to differentiate between the schools being provided for the fine elite folk of society and those recipients of charity, to put you in your place to make sure you knew you were lower class. You were able to be educated, but your future serving higher classes was controlled,” Mrs Everist said.

She believes former convict Ikey Solomon is also likely to have been a Wapping resident.

It’s said Solomon was one of the characters from London’s Wapping on whom Charles Dicken based his Oliver Twist character, Fagin.

Solomon’s shady reputation as a trainer of pickpockets and receiver of stolen goods preceded his arrival in the 1820s in Hobart where he set up as a tobacconist and made a successful attempt to reunite with his wife.

Was it really a disease-ridden slum?

Mrs Everist and others say not at all.

“For it to be a slum it had to have non-permanent housing. This had permanent housing, this area had houses built of stone and brick and only a small portion of them were made of timber,” she said.

Michael Sprod, co-author of Down Wapping published in 1988, said disease was certainly evident because the rivulet was used upstream to dump household waste, and it regularly flooded.

“There was cholera and typhoid outbreaks in Hobart not just down there as a result of poor sanitation, particularly around the rivulet, right up until the mid-19th century until the council got its act together.”

Mrs Everist said Wapping got a bad rap because it was full of people who “liked a rowdy life, who drank far too much and weren’t part of fine society”.

“It got this bad reputation of being somewhere you don’t want to go, a slightly dangerous place to go.

“But the people who lived here saw it completely differently. They saw themselves as a nice close-knit community, able to help your neighbours and look after your own.”

But there is no escaping the seedy side and its reputation of being on-the-nose was accurate, given the nearby industries and the fact it was at the end of the Hobart rivulet — the city’s early sewer.

The reputation for crime and vice was not surprising given the proliferation of pubs and prostitutes; 15 on one corner alone recorded in one early statistic.

In the early days drinking holes for seafarers, British troops and the navy dotted the area, with 13 pubs in just a few blocks.

“There certainly were lot of pubs downs there but there were also a lot in the city — they were smaller .. neighbourhood bars like we are going back to now almost,” Mr Sprod said.

“Hobart was a very busy whaling port and seamen of that type came off the boats with lots of money and wanting a bit of entertainment and recreation.”

Was it as bad as people thought?

Much of the area’s early social history is garnered from newspaper reports recording crimes ranging from publicans taking out orders to stop wives from drinking to some truly grisly murders.

In one particularly nasty crime in the 1820s, John Leech brutally stabbed his wife to death with a stick. He left her with horrific injures but despite crying out for help for 30 minutes, no-one came to her aid.

Leech went to the gallows for his actions which he believed were fully justified because of her “unfeminine behaviour.”

There are also accounts of seamen drinking themselves to death.

“There was a high influx of sailors and whalers who would be living away for many months and then they get off their ships and some drank themselves to death,” she said.

Mr Sprod said the demographic was mixed and while prostitutes were heavily linked with the area, some of them came from outside Wapping.

“Although it was quite poor down there, they were poor but honest and, in fact, the district was probably really dominated by people who worked in the local industries,” he said.

“It was a mixture of both, clearly the waterfront area had a lot of colourful life but the Wapping district was quite closely packed with housing and plenty of people who were decent upstanding citizens.”

Mrs Everist said the residents protected their own.

“People who grew up here felt they were quite safe, you don’t pick on your own. You might mug an interloper, mug a whaler who has got lots of money because he wasn’t a local.”

Does anything of old Wapping remain?

Above ground, the Theatre Royal and a church used by the Mission to Seafarers in Campbell Street are the major structures remaining, as well as the gasworks’ chimney and remnants of brick walls.

Below ground, excavations for buildings such as the $90 million cultural perform arts centre, have revealed glimpses of former Wapping life.

Under the Menzies Centre on Liverpool Street, just on the outskirts, are examples of drains and cobble stones of yesteryear now encased in glass showcases.

None of the watering holes survive but the remnants of one — the Red Lion — still exist in the venue which was a favourite live music haunt of locals in the 1970s and 80s.

A fire place and part of an exterior wall remain from the pub which had four name changes and is now absorbed into a hotel apartment complex on Macquarie Street.

“It [Wapping] has been built over and been forgotten,” Ms Everist said.

“It’s really hard to remember an entire community once all of the buildings have been bulldozed.”

But despite this, she encourages visitors and residents alike to “get digging” and learn more about early Wapping.

“I’ve met people with older relatives who have memories of this area and that’s where we get these stories from people who say ‘no, it was a nice, tight-knit community’,” she said.

Gone but not forgotten

Mrs Everist said Wapping disappeared through neglect and lack of forethought.

The sanitation was not fixed until the people were moved out to make way for industry and transport needs.

“The council was required to take care of the unsanitary conditions and back in the late 1890s they had grand plans for reinvigorating, but it all came to nothing,” she said.

“It was much easier to condemn all of those little homes and move the people out to the suburbs and put in light industry.

“That’s when the council put in better sewerage and plumbing and redirected the rivulet underground and further back at Macquarie Point.

In the 1990s the Hobart City Council tried to reinvigorate the area with affordable apartment living.

The Sullivan’s Cove planning document stated:

The Wapping area should provide a high quality and stimulating residential environment and enjoyable, secure, safe and convenient routes for cars, pedestrians and cyclists.

The area should develop as a lively “people place” centred on Collins Street and sheltered or buffered on the high traffic edges.

But the new locals tend to disappear into the apartments which are worth upwards of $500,000, and a far cry from the original dwellings.

An attempt to reinstate the name was also part of the plan, but many Hobartians would struggle to tell you the location of the modern-day Wapping.

About our Curious Hobart questioner:

Jane Orbell-Smith grew up in Hobart and now lives in Redcliffe, Queensland.

“As a kid growing up in Hobart, whenever we passed through the Wapping area, my parents and grandparents would talk about old stories from Wapping and how tough life was for the people that lived there,” she said.

“With the development in the area, I thought it would be interesting to know more about it’s history.”

Do you have a question about Hobart?

You can suggest something for us to investigate by filling out the information below.

Go on, be Curious!

Topics: history, community-and-society, arts-and-entertainment, human-interest, hobart-7000, north-hobart-7000, south-hobart-7004, west-hobart-7000, tas

Return of ice fish to Sydney Harbour honours Aboriginal fisherwomen

Updated January 10, 2018 09:41:56

The story of the Aboriginal fisherwomen of Sydney Harbour and their defiance against British colonists, who once excessively hauled 4,000 fish in one day, is the inspiration for a new public artwork at Barangaroo.

Lifelong Sydney resident Emily McDaniel is a descendant of the Kalari clan from the Wiradjuri nation in central west New South Wales.

When Ms McDaniel was invited to curate the new artwork, titled Four Thousand Fish, she ultimately wanted to commemorate the influential Cammeraygal fisherwoman after whom the harbour location was named.

“Sydney thinks of Barangaroo as a location first and foremost,” Ms McDaniel said.

“I want to reverse that, for people to know that she was a woman and she very strongly opposed her husband Bennelong’s interaction with the British.”

According to accounts written in 1804 by Lieutenant-Colonel David Collins, British colonists hauled in 4,000 fish from the waters of Sydney Cove during one day in 1790.

It was an excessive act that greatly affected the Eora fisherwomen of the area who practiced more sustainable methods of fishing by hand.

“When this happened it completely eliminated women from their position in the community,” Ms McDaniel said.

“[The colonists] gifted about 40 fish down the river to Bennelong — that was men giving fish to men, so women, again, out of the picture.”

Ms McDaniel said this event provided an understanding into why Barangaroo was recorded as a “difficult” character throughout history.

“When Bennelong first went to Sydney to meet the governor, she broke his fishing spears in anger and protest,” she said.

“But what we’re saying here is there’s a context for her actions, there was a reason.

“She wasn’t just angry, she was an environmentalist and she was standing up for women’s rights as well.”

While it is estimated there were around 1,700 colonists at Port Jackson at the time, Ms McDaniel said their fishing activities were excessive for that population.

“I think it was just [the colonists] reaping the country of its benefits because they didn’t connect to the land yet.”

For the artwork, Ms McDaniel brought together the talents of four Indigenous artists who created visual, audio and sculptural elements responding to the story of the fisherwomen.

Visitors to the site at Nawi Cove have been invited to scoop water from the harbour and create fish-shaped ice sculptures using cast moulds.

Once frozen, the ice fish are then placed on a large canoe moored at the end of a pontoon.

The warmth of a flame and the setting sun melts them, symbolising their return to the waters of Warrane (Sydney Harbour).

At the opening of the installation, Ms McDaniel said she was deeply moved by the participants’ actions throughout the ceremony.

“The reverence, care and precision as they placed those fish was quite beautiful to watch, they stacked them up perfectly,” she said.

“I really hadn’t prepared myself for that and I am quite moved by that.”

Ms McDaniel said she wanted visitors to be reminded of the environmental impact that current and future populations would make on the harbour’s delicate marine ecosystem.

“This isn’t a story of the past, it’s a story that has defined our future.

“These actions, from when the British first came to Australia, have really influenced the way we respond to our natural environment.

“I hope this is a project that makes Sydneysiders take responsibility for the history we’ve inherited.”

Topics: visual-art, indigenous-aboriginal-and-torres-strait-islander, indigenous-culture, history, human-interest, community-and-society, sydney-2000

First posted January 10, 2018 09:00:00