Established in 2003, proppaNOW is one of Australia’s leading cultural collectives – members Vernon Ah Kee, Tony Albert, Richard Bell, Megan Cope, Jennifer Herd, Gordon Hookey and Laurie Nilsen explore the politics of Aboriginal art and culture, re-thinking what it means to be a ‘contemporary Aboriginal artist’.
Conceived as a collaborative activist gesture, OCCURRENT AFFAIR addresses current socio-political, economic and environmental issues, while celebrating the strength, resilience and continuity of Aboriginal culture. Engaging wordplay through its title, OCCURRENT AFFAIR references the sensational journalistic style of some television current affair programs. OCCURRENT AFFAIR embraces the slippage between language and its associated readings to probe and present new narratives. The exhibition will reflect on the ongoing state of affairs affecting Aboriginal communities – issues that are relevant to all Australians.
One of Australia’s leading Indigenous arts collectives, proppaNOW was set up in Brisbane in 2003 to give urban-based Aboriginal artists a voice. They present a unique and controversial perspective of black Australia which is sometimes confronting and always thought provoking. proppaNOW create art that raises awareness of Aboriginal urban expression that depicts a contemporary story. They reinforce that Aboriginal Australia is a living culture that has evolved over time and dispel the notion that indigenous art needs to be from a remote area to be ‘authentic’.
Image: ProppaNOW, OCCURRENT AFFAIR, installation view at Ngununggula, NSW, 2023. Photo by Brian Rapsey.
An exhibition from The University of Queensland Art Museum touring with Museums & Galleries of NSW. This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body. This project is assisted by the Australian Government’s Visions of Australia program.
Opening 17 November 2023, 6pm RSVP via try booking www.trybooking.com/CEZES
In addition to the official exhibition opening, Gosford Regional Gallery in partnership with Awesome Black will be presenting the activation of Richard Bell’s Embassy with an in-conversation with trailblazing filmmaker Aunty Maddy McGrady, and a performance from 2023 Australian Poetry Slam champion, Rob Waters. Earlier in the evening local Elders are invited to collaborate with Tony Albert in the painting of his artwork Terra Nullius (with Scrooge).