Ryan Presley’s

Next Wave NAIDOC Week: Featured Artists


To celebrate NAIDOC Week Next Wave is proud to profile the seven Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists who are part of our 2013 Kickstart program. The diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Australia is evident in the many different clans and country represented by our artists; its interesting to see Australia’s geography from an Aboriginal perspective.

Please meet:

Henrietta Baird
Country: Grandmother- Yidinji (Atherton tablelands clan group) and Grandfather- Kuku yalandji clan (coastal area Daintree, Mossman and inland to Wujal Wujal area). Henrietta’s creative practice is focused on Australian Indigenous contemporary dance, her experience as an Indigenous contemporary dance artist has inspired her to explore her own dance language. More on Henrietta and her Next Wave collaborator Raghav Handa here.

Megan Cope
Megan is a descendant from the Quandamooka region (North Stradbroke Island) in South East QLD. Her work explores notions of environment, identity, geomorphology and mapping; decolonising methodologies and toponymy are a primary aspect of her practice. Megan is a core member of Aboriginal collective proppaNOW in Brisbane. More on Megan here.

Ghenoa Gela
Koedal (Crocodile) and Waumer (Frigate Bird) woman Ghenoa Gela is a strong Torres Strait Islander from Rockhampton Central Queensland. Ghenoa is inspired by her family’s stories and wants to increase awareness of Torres Strait Islander culture through her emerging dance company, ‘Malungoka’. More on Ghenoa here.

Colin Kinchela
Colin is an independent Sydney based actor, director and writer from the Gomaroi Nation. He works across a sweep of performance mechanisms combining dominant work practices of community cultural (heritage) protocols and social justice. Colin is a board Member and an initial member of Mooghalin Performing Arts, one of the newest Aboriginal theatre companies in Australia. More on Colin and his Next Wave creative partnership Sean Jorvn here.

Steaphan Paton
Steaphan is an interdisciplinary artist. A member of the Gunai and Monaro nations, he grew up in Gippsland. His practice explores tradition, race and colonialism informed through his worldview being Aboriginal Australian. More on Steaphan here.

Ryan Presley
Ryan is a visual artist who was born in Alice Springs in 1987. His father’s family originates from the Moyle River region (Peppimenarti/Port Keats) of the Northern Territory, while his mother’s family were Scandinavian immigrants to Australia. He utilises his own mixed heritage experiences and insights to contribute other understandings to the social and cultural nature of past and present colonial Australia. More on Ryan here.

Carly Sheppard
Based in Melbourne, Carly is an Indigenous dancer and choreographer descending from the Wallangamma and Takalaka Tribes of North QLD. Carly has performed in the Perth International Arts Festival (Rhoda Roberts) and IDJA Dance Theatre,  and worked with choreographers Becky Hilton and Fiona Cameron. More on Carly here.