The Southern Cross is the most famous constellation in the southern hemisphere. Ever since colonisation it’s been claimed, appropriated and hotly-contested for ownership by a radical range of Australian groups. But for Aboriginal people the meaning of this heavenly body is deeply spiritual. And just about completely unknown. For a start, the Southern Cross isn’t even a cross - it’s a totem that’s deeply woven into the spiritual and practical lives of Aboriginal people.
Now one of Australia’s leading film-makers, Warwick Thornton, tackles this fiery subject head on in a bold, provocative and poetic essay-film. “We Don’t Need a Map” asks tough questions about the place of the Southern Cross constellation in the Australian psyche.
Imbued with Warwick’s cavalier spirit, this is a fun and thought-provoking ride through Australia’s cultural and political landscape.
How does the project meet the aims of a philanthropic foundation?
We Don't Need A Map aims to engage all Australians in a national conversation about what it is to be a contemporary Australian. It is film about national identity. It is a film about social inclusion and targets young Australians through its many references to youth culture throughout the film. We want the film to help the nation move its national discourse forward. We want to have a new dialogue between black and white Australia and we see this film as making a major contribution to that.
It meets the aims of any philanthropic foundation that wants to create positive change to black and white Australia through reconciliation, and also by closing the gap between black and white Australia. The film aims to have a new national discussion about the place of Indigenous Australians in our national consciousness, one that celebrates Indigenous contributions to our culture across Australia.
What outcomes do you hope to achieve by making this film and how will you measure its impact?
Aims & Objectives
The film will air on NITV and SBS on 23rd July 2017 and will also be available on the SBS catch-up service SBS on Demand. We aim to achieve a significant audience and positive social media engagement on the issues raised in the film and will measure this through metrics.
This film is a metaphorical telling of our reality: the resistance to genuinely accept Aboriginality in the modern Australian nation is still well and truly part of Australia’s national psyche. This resistance will only continue to keep us divided, angry and searching for a national identity on a surface level. Because until there’s recognition, a true dialogue between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Australians has no place to begin. But unity is possible. We share this land now. And the first step in that direction is right there in front of us, and above us in the stars ... The first step is recognition. In this film we dare to ask … what if it we stopped resisting?
We want to create a dialogue between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Australians in order to bring about genuine recognition of Aboriginality in the Australian Nation.We are holding up a mirror to contemporary Australia; the good, the bad and the ugly.
We are taking a journey with Warwick Thornton on this film. Warwick examines the antecedents of the recent Cronulla Riots by placing it in the context of our history and society. Warwick’s journey is both playful and poignant.
We are seeking to implement a strong education and outreach program into schools.
What is your education and outreach strategy?
We have engaged an impact producer to work with us to develop a comprehensive impact, education and outreach strategy to roll out from the broadcast in July 2017 and beyond.