Spotlight: KARI Indigenous Art Program kicks off

KARI’s Indigenous Art Program is just one of the organisation’s dedicated capacity building programs.

The program teaches local community members about Aboriginal art, both traditional and contemporary. It also provides them with the skills to teach others. Tailored to suit everyone from school students to adult group classes, the program is taught by locally and internationally-renowned artist Danielle Mate Sullivan. She hopes to increase the artistic confidence of all who attend.

About Danielle Mate Sullivan

Danielle is a contemporary Aboriginal artist born in Fairfield Sydney NSW. Her mother came from the remote town of Brewarrina, approximately one hour east of Bourke.

Danielle found an early connection with art while at school. This was a period of personal expression and learning about her own culture in an environment where identifying as a young Aboriginal person amongst a predominantly non-Aboriginal urban community, was a difficult thing to do.

She undertook a Bachelor of Creative Arts – Visual Arts and Design, at the University of Wollongong in NSW. Whilst studying she was recognised for her talent. In the Dolly Magazine Career Start Competition, she was selected as one of seven finalists. She was the only Aboriginal artist chosen in the top seven. It was her unique style and vibrant use of colour that set her apart.

In 2012 Danielle’s work became part of the Private Collection of The American Ambassador in Canberra ACT and more recently has become part of President Obama’s Private Collection.

Read more about Danielle and view her works here.

Danielle is a huge asset to the program, which has been running for approximately five years in various formats.

This program is hugely important as art is another medium for Aboriginal people to tell their stories and share experiences. Traditional Aboriginal art uses symbolism to tell their stories and for this reason, art is about more than just putting paint to canvas. There are much deeper cultural meanings when it comes to Aboriginal art.

This program is also used to promote the MIL-PRA Art Competition and Exhibition with many participants entering their artworks over the years. The program is a fantastic way to promote the exhibition and creative arts to Aboriginal people.