This year’s NAIDOC Week brought to focus Heal Country, a timely and necessary provocation for Next Wave.
This provocation continues to challenge us to confront the ways we exist within learnt institutional structures, systemic violence and disparity embedded in our cultures by colonisation; and seek substantive institutional structural and collaborative reform alongside First Nations Elders and communities.
Internally, we saw a spectrum of movement, unrest and change. We learnt and felt a lot.
Our community was hit, hurt and tested.
There is still much to do, and lots to unfurl as we move into what operation, gathering and connection could look like should we begin to heal.
And so, we start at the beginning.
We start On Country.
From 60,000 years to the unborn
Generations of First Nations people carry a cultural and creative continuum that is intimately connected to the community, lands and waters from which they come.
Theirs is a sovereign, living culture, where storytelling, knowledge and wisdom, grief and celebration continue to be practiced.
On the unceded lands on the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Eastern Kulin Nations, we begin – as settlers; carrying with us legacies of colonisation, displacement and migration – seeking refuge and finding home.
Next Wave is privileged to traverse the land and waterways of this continent of many nations – to share in the act of art making and culture building – grounded on justice, friendship, and care.
As guests, we have much to listen to and learn;
we have much to offer; we have much to do.
This always was, and always will be,
We were privileged with Aunty Diane’s presence and a smoking ceremony at our home at Brunswick Mechanics where we meet, work and create art.
As the burning eucalyptus moved through space, way up into the ceiling, through our studios and lingered on our clothes – we are ready to welcome you back in.
Over the coming months we invite you to share in our visions, breakthroughs and new programs that will re-orientate how we gather together locally, and across these states and territories we are lucky to traverse on.
We look forward to sharing with you,
Next Wave xx