2008/0136.a-c born in this skin

born in this skin

Artist

Vernon AH KEE
Aboriginal/Indigenous
Birth:
1967
 in
Innisfail, Queensland

Artwork

Title
born in this skin
Date
2008
Medium/Material
crayon, charcoal and synthetic polymer on canvas
Dimensions
179.5 x 239.5 cm each, three panels (Height x Width x Depth)
Credit line
Purchased through the Friends of the Art Gallery, 2008
State Art Collection, Art Gallery of Western Australia
Accession Number
2008/0136.a-c
Currently on display (GALLERY 9 in GALLERY BUILDING)

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Curatorial insightThis three-panel portrait depicts the artist’s great-grandmother, Annie Ah Sam, and his daughter, Annie Ah Kee. The drawing of young Annie was made from a photo taken in 2008. The drawings of Annie Ah Sam were made from photographs taken in 1938 at the then Palm Island Aboriginal settlement, located off the coast of Townsville, North Queensland by anthropologist Norman Tindale.Living conditions on the government-run settlement were notoriously harsh for the Aboriginal men, women and children who were forced to live there.By drawing ‘Grannie Annie’, an inmate at the settlement, Ah Kee directs our attention to this sordid history. The work also symbolises the artist’s belief that his culture survives and thrives through family. And, the title of the work, born in this skin, alludes to the ongoing race politics in this country. (AGWA, 2008)

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Vernon id: 18562