WARNING: This website may contain the voices and images of Aboriginal people who have died.

Heart of Artness is a Conradesque journey into the labyrinthine world of some of Australia’s Aboriginal artists and the non-Indigenous folk who interact with them to produce cutting edge contemporary art. It allows us to hear their voices directly, as a radio documentary and podcast series. The podcasts are based on 35 oral history interviews with Aboriginal artists, art centre staff, art dealers, volunteers, activists, curators, critics and others.

Listen to the trailer for the podcast series

Speakers on the trailer:
Yinimala Gumana
Richard Bell
Cecilia Alfonso
Gloria Morales
Alma Nungarrayai Granites
Margo Neale
Dallas Gold
Siobhan McHugh
Will Stubbs
Vernon Ah Kee

The series derives from a University of Wollongong research project funded by the Australian Research Council. It examines cross-cultural influences and relationships at three Aboriginal art organisations: Warlukurlangu Art Centre inYuendemu, NT (approx. 280 km north-west of Alice Springs), Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Art Centre in Yirrkala, NE Arnhem Land (approx. 700km east of Darwin) and proppaNOW, an artists’ collective in Brisbane.

This series is devised and produced by Siobhan McHugh, Associate Professor in Journalism at the University of Wollongong, in association with art historian Ian McLean, Hugh Ramsay Chair of Contemporary Art at the University of Melbourne, and Margo Neale, Senior Indigenous Curator at the National Museum of Australia and Adjunct Professor at the Australian National University. The oral history collection is proposed for archiving at the National Library of Australia.

This short article, “Aboriginal Art: is it a white thing?” describes one aspect of our findings.