Wreck Bay in art and story

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WRECK Bay is on the Bherriwerri peninsular, the southern arm of Jervis Bay and was acquired by the Commonwealth of Australia to build the new national capital’s naval port, 100 years ago.

Julie Freeman, Shell Grandmother basket (with Grand Daughter)
Julie Freeman, Shell Grandmother basket (with Grand Daughter)
A travelling exhibition celebrating Wreck Bay’s cultural heritage and connections to Canberra is part of  Tuggeranong Arts Centre at Lanyon NAIDOC Week celebrations.

The exhibition mixes traditional and contemporary art works in a variety of media such as shell work, paintings on canvas, timber and poles, ochre works and sculptural pieces, all telling  stories intrinsic to the community of Wreck Bay.

This  Saturday the gallery is turning  on artist talks and afternoon tea.  Theresa Ardler and Julie Freeman will speak about their work and their Wreck Bay stories.

Ardler is a Gweagal-Dharawal woman, who  has lived all of her life on the Wreck Bay Aboriginal Community. Her artwork is now held in collections in Australia and around the world, such as The National Museum of the American Indian in Washington D.C.  and  the Vatican.

Freeman is a traditional owner of the Wreck Bay Aboriginal Community on the South Coast of NSW. Her mother is of the Gurawarl clan (Wonga pigeon) from Botany Bay (kamay) and comes from a long line of shell workers and story tellers. Her father was a Wreck Bay fisherman of the old tradition. Inspired by family, country, culture, tradition, history and life, she says, “art is how culturecontinues and is maintained into the future. It strengthens connection to country. It’s my life; it’s in the blood, its family and its forever.”

“Windsongs and Waterlines – where is, what is Wreck Bay?” artist talks at Tuggeranong Arts Centre at Lanyon, (former Nolan Gallery). Tharwa Drive, Lanyon 2.30 – 3.30pm  July 13.


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Helen Musa
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