N Exploring connections between art, song and dance in Aboriginal Australia

Postdoctoral Research Fellow Dr Myfany Turpin, from UQ's School of Languages and Comparative Cultural Studies, will explore the poetic nature of texts, their meanings, how dance and visual designs are used as iconic representations, and how Indigenous relationship to land is at the heart of these art forms.

"The lecture promotes the collaborative efforts between SLCCS and the Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education to assist Alyawarr people in maintaining their unique performance traditions," Dr Turpin said.

SLCCS Director of Research Dr Ilana Mushin said the School was delighted to highlight some of its outstanding linguistics work during UQ's annual Diversity Week.

"UQ has a long tradition of working with various Aboriginal communities to conduct linguistic research in a number of culturally diverse areas," Dr Mushin said.

"This includes song, visual art, dance, language, literacy and numeracy, conversation and education.

"The ongoing collaboration between UQ and Indigenous communities is important for a number of reasons.

"By working with inter-generational groups, the research process facilitates learning and also provides a forum in the community for singing and discussing the meanings of songs."

The public lecture will also showcase a new book, Antarrengeny Awely: Alyawarr women's songs from Antarrengeny, which includes a CD and DVD.

Co-author Dr Turpin said the book features the talents of Mary Kemarr and Katie Kemarr, Northern Territory Aboriginal artists who will also be at the lecture.

"Publishing works such as those by the Kemarrs are important for the language community and will be an important resource for Aboriginal people in their struggle to maintain traditional songs," Dr Turpin said.

"They also appeal to a general audience, which we hope will increase understanding and appreciation of Indigenous performance arts and culture."

UQ's Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous Education) Professor Cindy Shannon will provide the Acknowledgement of Country and give a brief introduction to the lecture.

SLCCS is hosting the lecture with the support of a UQ Diversity Week Grant.

Event details:
What: Public lecture: Singing, Dancing and Painting Country
When: Friday 24 May, 5pm - 6pm (cocktail reception 6pm-7pm)
Where: UQ Art Museum, St Lucia Campus
RSVP essential: (limited places) to events@slccs.uq.edu.au by Tuesday 22 May.

Contact: +61 7 3365 1445 or Lynda Flower, l.flower@uq.edu.au , +61 7 3365 6247.