Ancestral Memories

Things to do, Fairs and festivals Free
A Spirit Eel winding its way through a cloudy night sky
Photograph: Supplied/Rising

Time Out says

See a Spirit Eel circle the facade of Hamer Hall in this magnetic artwork by First Nations creatives during Rising

New winter festival Rising includes fabulous free stuff you can enjoy whether it’s pre-payday or not. One of the most awe-inspiring parts of Arts Centre Melbourne’s wowsome offering is Ancestral Memories. Celebrating the incredible creativity of First Nations artists, interdisciplinary legend Maree Clarke (Mutti Mutti/Yorta Yorta/Boon Wurrung) has collaborated with her nephew Mitch Mahoney (Boon Wurrung/Barkinji), turning the grand circular façade of Hamer Hall into a living, breathing canvas around which a Spirit Eel weaves its wondrous way.

The beautiful digital projection shows the protector spirit of the peoples of the Kulin Nation winding across land and over water, transforming into many forms as it goes. A source of nourishing food, its journey marks the passage of the seasons. In connecting then and now to here, the Spirit Eel symbolises First Nations peoples’ resilience.

Clarke folds ceremony, ritual and the language of her ancestors into her impressive practice. Ancestral Memories honours intergenerational strength through her collaboration with Mahoney, whose work is all about celebrating the creative endeavours of southeastern First Peoples. So set yourself up on a prime spot on the Princes Bridge on a cool, crisp winter’s night and bask in the glow of their brilliant work together. 

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