1996/0288 Birthday girl

Birthday girl

Artist

Julie DOWLING
Aboriginal/Indigenous
Birth:
30 Jan 1969
 in
Subiaco, Perth, Western Australia

Artwork

Title
Birthday girl
Date
1996
Medium/Material
synthetic polymer paint, red ochre and blood on canvas
Dimensions
91.5 x 61.0 cm (Height x Width x Depth)
Credit line
Purchased 1996
State Art Collection, Art Gallery of Western Australia
Accession Number
1996/0288
Currently not on display

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Extended Label

At Mogumber Mission, the authorities separate the babies and childrenfrom their parents. Birthdays were seldom celebrated within the manymissions and orphanages in Western Australia for First Nations children.I painted this picture to represent the possibility of a young child beinggiven bread and butter pudding (at the very least) on her birthday. Iimagined that she could have two of her friends with her to celebrate.The sad thing is that this story is true. Such a story was told by my GreatAunt Dorothy Nannup to my Nana. Birthdays are creations of anotherculture anyway.In our culture, a child is celebrated every day of its young life. They arenever hit or spoken harshly to. They are surrounded by family and learnfrom older children and elders until they reach maturity. It is then thata ceremony marks the move from childhood to adulthood. It provides aclear transition. We also believe that elders and children are closer tothe Dreaming.

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Vernon id: 14620