Queen Victoria Building
In 2022 Boomalli was engaged by Chas Clarkson to develop an immersive experience for the Queen Victoria Building’s iconic Christmas tree display. Chas Clarkson and the QVB’s vision for the 2022-2025 Christmas campaign was to offer a platform for First Nations people and artists to showcase their stories, art and rich culture.
Chas Clarkson designed the Christmas tree based on the ancient Australian Wollemi Pine tree.
Founding Member Artist, Dr. Bronwyn Bancroft was engaged to curate and provide cultural consultancy around the activation, and lend her artistic expertise to design and develop the ground floor artwork installation for the tree.
Bronwyn’s artwork design for the tree incorporates her interpretation and vision of bush and rainforest, to depict the Australian landscape prior to colonisation. The artwork is embedded with tools and utensils, depicting the ingenuity of Aboriginal people. Below the tree are hanging bird decorations designed by Bronwyn and feature the Southern Royal Albatross.
“My rationale for this artwork is based on the rhythms and the cycle of life. As we are experiencing massive changes in our world, I wanted to pay homage to Mother Nature and Aboriginal peoples’ successful relationship with the natural world for over 60,000 years. The landscape imagery that will wrap around the fabricated circle will be a lustrous vision of bush and rainforest, embedded with tools and utensils created by Indigenous knowledge in a world where technology was non-existence. The Southern Royal Albatross symbolizes freedom through the flight of native birds. I want this image to be joyful and be symbolic in releasing freedom for many who lost their lives defending their Country.”
– Dr. Bronwyn Bancroft.
The artwork installation on the Ground Floor of the QVB incorporates a soundscape from the album Songs of Disappearance by the Bowerbird Collective, a collection of endangered native bird calls.
QVB, Chas Clarkson and Bronwyn, worked with Boomalli artist members, Jude Jarrett and Jeffrey Samuels, who hand painted 24 flannel flower decorations for the tree. Their art explores themes of connection to Country, Mother Nature and a celebration of Australia’s native flora and fauna.
Boomalli coordinated the official launch of the 2022 QVB Christmas Tree which included a Welcome to Country by Gadigal Artist, Nadeena Dixon and a performance by the Buuja Buuja Butterfly Dance Group.
Photography Credit: Joseph Mayers
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