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Blak Flair Project: Notebook - Madge Bowen

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Blank 80 page notebook printed on recycled paperstock with soy based inks.

ARTIST: Madge Bowen: "I came to Hope Vale with my brother in the 1950s. I have worked as a Teacher's Aide for 20 years and retired in 2007 when I came to work here at the Hope Vale Arts and Cultural Centre and now I'm learning to paint in the traditional painting style, I love it. We the Aboriginal people love fishing in the wet season when the jew fish and the barramundi are on the run. It is a thrill for me to catch a barra, so I love painting fish".

ARTWORK DETAILS:  International Women's Day 1870, acrylic paint on board, 2007, 250 x 200 mm.

ARTWORK STORY:  Hunting and gathering. Every morning after the sun comes up, women in the camps would feed their families and then gather up their dilly bags and go to the billabong to gather food for their camps. They took their babies with them because the mothers breast fed their babies. Some of the women gathered grass to make dilly bags. Some of the mothers fished, making lines from cobwebs, rolling it on their legs to make long lines and used fish bone for hooks. The younger girls had to go out with the women so they could learn from them. They swam and dived for mussels and also gathered roots and bulbs from the lily plants. The women did all this and, when satisfied they had enough food to put into their dilly bags, they then carried the dilly bags back to camps to feed their families. I know this is true because I heard these hunting/gathering stories told by older women of my clan.

Blak Flair is a KickArts creative merchandise project that has been generously supported by the Christensen Fund. The project aims to develop a collection of merchandise that portrays the work of Indigenous artists from Far North Queensland to promote their work and cultural importance to the broader community.

Dimensions: 210 x 150mm