L-R: Maddison Gibbs, Lisa Roberts, Katherina Petrou; Menindee Fish Kill by Melissa Williams-Brown in collaboration with Bonita Ely, with Antarctic flows image by Lisa Roberts. Photos: Sandy Edwards, 2019
Why travel? Yorta Yorta and Dja Dja Wurrung artist and educator Tiriki Onus:
I love that this project travels, physically and virtually, and the whole metaphor of travel as migratory patterns that are kind of linear but not, as well... if we travel down to the Murray river, every time we come to a new language group there's a new name for that river which we Yorta Yorta call the Dhungala. There's also a new creation story for that river. We travelled up and down that river through time. The river was our highway. And so, we were able to be well-informed diplomats who could move from country to county, from language to language, and acknowledge all those stories happening in the same place, and with that same river. I believe this project has the potential to open up young minds to the true meaning of Treaties as agreements people make to live well together.
Why the moon? Living Data collaborating scientist William Gladstone asks, "What happens under Antarctic sea ice at full moon?" Knowledge of lunar cycles is essential for 'immediate and intimate' responses to country that Bill Gammage characterises as Indigenous (Youtube, Feb 13, 2012). Guided by Shawn Wilson (Research is Ceremony, 2008), I learn that relational ways of knowing are available to everyone.
Why the Flannel flower? The Flannel flower signifies a message in the Dreaming story told by D'harawal knowledge holders Frances Bodkin and Gawaian Bodkin-Andrews, that there are times when we must listen to the voices of the young (TALARA'TINGI: How the Flannel Flower Came to Be, 2001). My hope is that this project will inspire you to make your own library with stories from your relationships with nature, specially your relationships with young people who are our future.