A weekend of art, film and discovery will mark Reconciliation Week in Dungog this year thanks to a collaboration between Dungog Contemporary, members of the local Gringai, Dungog Reconciliation Group and The James Theatre.
National Reconciliation Week (NRW) is held from May 27-June 3 with the aim for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures and achievements, and to explore how we can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia.
The Dungog Reconciliation Group was formed last year following the presentation of the Warren Thornton documentary "We Don't Need a Map" at The James Theatre, instigated by Helen Rubeli.
A group of people met following the film to further discuss advancing ideas about reconciliation on a local level.
"We'd very much like to connect with indigenous Australians and we want to proceed with respect and sensitivity," said member Fran Crane.
Meanwhile, Dungog Contemporary principals Sarah Crawford and Stephen Hobbs were planning a new uniquely Australian exhibition at their gallery.
On Saturday, June 1 at 3pm the gallery will open the exhibition with original works on canvas and limited edition prints from Mowanjum Arts, woven works from Maningrida Arts and Culture and paintings from Nic Ferguson an artist activist with family connections to Dungog.
The exhibition runs throughout June and July and all the works are available for acquisition.
The Friends of the James have come on board, screening a documentary from film director Nicholas Wrathall, UNDERMINED, Tales from the Kimberley at The James Theatre at 7pm on Saturday June 1.
About this film: UNDERMINED investigates the politics of an area now branded "the future economic powerhouse of Australia," and what this means for our First People and their unique cultural landscapes. As pressure from industry exposes the limits of Indigenous land rights, what will remain of over 200 remote Aboriginal communities? We follow young leader Albert Wiggan, veteran cattleman Kevin Oscar and Senior Elder June Davis through David-and-Goliath battles to preserve their homelands, asking the question: for whose benefit is this development?
On Sunday, June 2, the Dungog Reconciliation Group will host an interpretive walk on the Dungog Common. Ken Rubeli will lead the walk starting at the Dungog saleyards to Dungog Common. Numbers are strictly limited for this walk and registration is essential.
The James Theatre will screen the musical documentary Gurrumul on Sunday afternoon at 3pm, fitting in well with its usual Sunday musical theme.
About this film: With a voice that captured the heart of millions across the world, Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu was an enigmatic talent. Blind from birth, the proud Yolngu man spoke through his music. He found purpose and meaning through songs inspired by his community and country in North East Arnhem Land.
Details and how to book for all events are available on the Dungog Contemporary website.
3:00 PM SATURDAY - EXHIBITION OPENING
7:00 PM SATURDAY - UNDERMINED
1:00 PM SUNDAY - Interpretive walk on Dungog Common
3:00 PM SUNDAY - GURRUMUL