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Noongar Country 2023 @BRAG

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Celebrating Indigenous Art and Heritage at Bunbury Regional Art Gallery

Bunbury Regional Art Gallery was abuzz with excitement on 2 July 2 as hundreds of art enthusiasts and culture admirers gathered for the grand opening of the Noongar Country exhibition and awards. This remarkable event served as a platform to celebrate the rich heritage of Indigenous artists while also unveiling this year's outstanding winners.

Listen - An Artwork Rooted in Tradition

Emily Rose's masterpiece, Listen, took home the prestigious Alcoa Award, along with a prize of $10,000.

"Listen is a painting of my Koolang (child) sitting upon the solid foundations of the land. She is quiet, listening to what her elders, past and present, have to teach. She is ready to grow with the guidance of mother and mumma."

Emily Rose - Alcoa Award winner

The judging panel was captivated by the beautiful representation of country's colors, coupled with ancestor motifs and symbol links, all aligned with this year's theme, For Our Elders.

The artwork beautifully captures the connection to the land and celebrates the strong intergenerational bonds that form an integral part of the Noongar culture.

A Tribute to Uncle Ben or Pop - Second Place Winner

Stephen Taylor's touching portrait of his uncle, Yued and Wadjuk elder of the Nyoongar people, known as Uncle Ben or Pop, secured the second place, earning him a prize of $2000.

The judges were in awe of the way the painting truly captured Uncle Ben in a powerful moment of advocacy for his people. Stephen's technical skills and color palette were highly commended, reflecting a deep understanding of his subject and their significance in the community.

Commendable Achievements and Recognition

In addition to the top two awards, recognition was also given to Charlotte Ugle for her striking artwork Emu Standing, and Chris Collard for his poignant work, Gravel Hill Camps. The diversity of artistic expressions in the Noongar Country exhibition highlighted the depth of talent within the Indigenous artist community.

Nanna’s Living Room 

As part of this year's ‘Noongar Country' exhibition, curator Katelyn Whitehurst has transformed the Lindsey Stout gallery space into a welcoming loungeroom inviting visitors to spend some time and share yarns. Grab a tea or coffee from the gallery's coffee lounge, take a seat, get cosy, and take in the adorning artwork, while enjoying some living room activities provided, including card games, board games, and books, along with crochet and knitting needles. This space was intended to remind us of our elders, inspired by Katelyn's own experiences growing up in her Nan's living room. 

Nanna's Living Room is open to all during gallery hours. What better wait to immerse yourself in this year’s exhibition. 

The interactive stories

Immerse yourself in this year’s Noongar Country exhibition and unlock the hidden narratives behind selected artworks by scanning the accompanying QR codes. Listen to the artists share the stories behind their works. BYO smart device with headphones or borrow one of BRAG's. 

Experience Noongar Country

For those who missed the grand opening, fear not! The Noongar Country exhibition will be on display at the Bunbury Regional Art Gallery until 24 September, offering plenty of opportunities to witness and appreciate the captivating artworks that showcase the essence of Noongar culture and heritage.

Embracing Culture - Supporting Programs

The celebration of Indigenous art and culture doesn't end with the exhibition. As part of the event, a series of supporting programs will be held, providing a deeper insight into the creative process and the significance of these artistic expressions.

For instance, the panel discussion titled Making Art in Goomburrup was held on Saturday, August 5, providing a glimpse into the creative journey and inspirations behind these captivating artworks.

On 22 September, there will be a Curator Talk, Noongar Country, offering an opportunity to delve into the curation process and the stories behind the exhibition.

Discover More at

If you're eager to explore this exciting exhibition and other upcoming events, visit the Bunbury Regional Art Gallery's website at

The Noongar Country exhibition is not just a display of art; it's a celebration of Indigenous heritage, a journey into the connection to country, and an homage to the wisdom passed down through generations. So, get down to BRAG and immerse yourself in the mesmerising world of Noongar art and culture.