21 October - 3 December 2017

Billy and Lulu Cooley_ Walka Mukata – Design on Hat_ 2017 (installation detail) Hot wire on felt. Image courtesy of the artists.

A new exhibition opening at The Lock-Up explores the ways contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists are responding to the resurgence in traditional practices and their place within the contemporary cultural context.

Transmission is about passing on, sharing down the line and renewing culture wherever people find themselves living today. The exhibition Transmission includes the work of artists from around Australia whose artmaking is informed by traditional culture, knowledge and understandings as well as by personal, social and historic experiences.

From works that utilise the immediately recognisable physical manifestation of culture such as traditional materials and techniques, performance and language, to those influenced by personal understandings, knowledge, beliefs and connections to family and country; the exhibition is a celebration of the strength, diversity and potency of living culture.

From kelp sculptural vessels, possum skin works, traditional burning on Akubra hats, printmaking, graphic design, installation, performance and video works, the artists in Transmission utilise the full range of creative tools and mediums available to them to produce works that speak to the past, present and future.
Included in the Transmission are also ten woven sculptural works created through the year- long regional Aboriginal education project Resurgence, guided by Hunter based consultancy Speaking in Colour. Nine sculptural works were created by hundreds of students and staff of nine Hunter Region schools including Cessnock, Glendale, Kotara, Lake Munmorah, Singleton, Newcastle, Warners Bay and West Wallsend. The tenth work was created by over 55 Aboriginal women from the Hunter Region who connected with cultural weaving for the first time through the project.

Curated by Cherie Johnson, Transmission features works by Billy and Lulu Cooley, Jason Coulthard, Ruby Djikarra Alderton, Cherie Johnson, Nicole Monks, David Leha, Steaphan Paton and Vicki West.

In conjunction with the exhibition a number of public programs, events and performances will expand on the ideas raised in the exhibition and create opportunities for the public to engage, be inspired and deepen their cultural understanding and awareness.

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Getting to: The Lock-Up

90 Hunter Street
Newcastle, NSW 2300

Opening Hours

Wednesday- Saturday

10:00 to 16:00


11:00 to 15:00

Museums & Galleries of NSW helps museums, galleries and Aboriginal cultural centres of NSW create exciting and inspiring experiences for visitors and strong, thriving local communities. We develop their skills, connect them with others in the industry, provide funding, point visitors their way, and give them access to ground-breaking exhibitions.

Museums & Galleries of NSW is supported by the NSW Government through Create NSW.

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