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This art series is dedicated to my great-grandmother, a Gugu Buyun woman with historical connections to Eastern Kuku Yalanji Country. Her mother was Lizzie Kalkajacka ‘Black Mountain’; my great-great grandmother who lived until she was 105years old. I didn’t have much time with her as she died when I was 4 years old.
I do remember her gentleness and I remember how heartbroken my family and community were when she died. I remember my mum wailing when she found out, and then seeing and hearing all my aunties and nannies cry together. I remember visiting her house and going to her beach shak after she left with my grandpa — watching him very closely as he grieved for his mother. He later told me I as grew up how much of a comfort I was for him on that day and how my 4year old self wrapped my arm around his back and said “nanny’s watching over you now”.
A monarch in our family and a truly selfless woman. My mum tells me that if she ever wanted to see everyone in the family she’d just spend the day at Nannies and everyone would visit her throughout the day. I feel the gentleness of her spirit guide me, especially when I’m feeling lost.
Design one. Weaving Basket was inspired by her weaving. My nanny was a master weaver and her legacy of weaving still lives in my community. She created dyes from plants that people are still trying to figure out. And I heard stories of her sitting in the creek beds slapping the leaves on rocks as she would sit there and weave. I want her legacy to live through me, I hope to be as gentle as her, as loving as her and always creating as did. Thank you Nanny for loving all the important people in my life and guiding me always ❤️
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