Professor Margo Neale ‘Alive with the songlines! Following in the footsteps of the Seven Sisters’

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Thursday, 29 June 2017 - 12:30pm to 1:30pm

Margo, Senior Indigenous Curator, National Museum of Australia, will background the next major exhibition of NMA on the Seven Sisters’ rock art, opening in September.

She will take you on the journey of the seven sisters as they flee their relentless and lustful pursuer across three deserts through the western and central desert, some 7000 kms. The Seven Sisters has both a terrestrial and a cosmological dimension where the land story is visible in the Orion constellation and the Pleiades star cluster.  The exhibition will enable visitors to walk the Seven Sister’s songlines. As they encounter works of art they will experience them as portals to significant sites on Country, and learn the stories of their creation. This presentation will give you a behind-the-scenes look at how this exhibition was put together by the curatorial team in collaboration with Aboriginal communities, and why it is considered a pioneering model where communities work with Museums rather than how Museums work with communities.

Margo is an internationally renowned curator of major exhibitions which included pivotal roles in the Asia-Pacific Triennials of international contemporary art at QAG in the 1990s, the international touring retrospective of the contemporary work of Emily Kame Kngwarreye in Japan (and Australia), the national touring retrospective of Lin Onus, and a permanent exhibition of century-old Aboriginal artefacts in the Vatican. She is the author, co-author or editor of 12 books, including the Oxford Companion to Aboriginal art and culture, and a co-recipient of 12 Australia Research Council Grants. Margo has won a number of awards and has been appointed by successive Australian governments to Prime Ministerial advisory panels across art and history,  including as a participant in PM Rudd’s 2020 Summit of Ideas and as a judge for the Prime Minister’s Australian History prize. She is an Aboriginal Australian from the Kulin nation with Wiradjuri and Gumbayngirr clan connections.