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1074 days ago
It is wonderful to know Georgiana Molloy will be remembered and recognised for her extrordinary life
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Arts, Community, Education, Environment, History, Human Rights, Indigenous, Social Justice, Youth
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: In Australia today over 250 remote indigenous homeland communities face forced closure. Djakapurra Munyarryun, a celebrated indigenous artist often called upon to travel the world and share his traditional knowledge wants to know why people want his culture but not his homeland lifestyle? It’s a simple question without a simple answer. EXTENDED SYNOPSIS: HOMELANDS is an authored documentary that looks to define what has to be done by the next generation of Yolngu leaders to create the future they want and not the one other’s tell them they have to have. Structured around the journey of Djakapurra Munyarryun, a 42 year-old Yolngu man and celebrated performing artist from NE Arnhem Land, as he wrestles with his quest for a better and more equitable future for his family and community. But the forces against achieving that, laden as they are with assimilationist views, conveniently forget that the Homeland’s Movement is an active implementation of the Rights to Culture recognised in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. It’s also what Djakapurra and other Yolngu leaders want for their children. In the Northern Territory 32% of the population is indigenous and over 60% of these live in remote homelands, with around 7,500 Yolngu amongst them. But many of these homelands are small, like Dhalinybuy where Djakapurra’s family lives, housing 50-100 people at most. Across the country, WA and SA state governments are set to close 250 homeland communities because they’re ‘unsustainable’. This doesn’t bode well for NT homeland’s future. In September 2007 the Commonwealth and the Northern Territory Governments signed an MOU that saw the transfer of responsibility for Indigenous housing and infrastructure handed to the Northern Territory Government and marked the cessation of Commonwealth funding for the 500 plus communities classed as homelands. Eight years on we see the NT Homeland movement starting to break under the strain as services remain under funded and programs are cut back to the bone. However, with the ambition of NT statehood in play for 2018 and the quest for Constitutional recognition of Australia’s first nation’s people, the question of Homeland’s future in Australia’s north is sure to be a major topic of debate as this film prepares the groundwork for a renewed call of self-determination. Conceived as a feature documentary HOMELANDS employs an immersive atmosphere that will lead its audience on a powerful human journey into the heart of Yolngu culture, backgrounded by an historic injustice and a contemporary social crisis. For Djakapurra, a man who has spent his life presenting his culture on the world’s stages, this means taking his 12-year old son Russell on the journey to manhood. First through his dhapi initiation and then onto the stage, as Djakapurra builds the dream of running his own remote homeland-based Production Company from Dhalinybuy with the development of a new work.
Reindeer in my Saami Heart
Arts, Community, Education, Environment, Health & Wellbeing, History, Human Rights, Indigenous, Social Justice
'Reindeer in my Saami Heart' is an inspiring documentary about the life and poetry of Inghilda Tapio, one of the last generation of Indigenous children to be born into a nomadic Saami reindeer herding family in Sweden's Arctic Circle. She is now inspirational poet and community activist. Inghilda is a member of Sweden’s own ‘stolen generation’, where nomadic children were forced by the Swedish government to attend residential boarding schools in northern towns after the Second World War, as part of an attempted policy of cultural 'assimilation'. At the age of seven Inghilda was removed from her teepee home, reindeer herds and Saami parents for months at a time, isolated and confused by the difficult Swedish language, intimidated by unfamiliar boarding school buildings and foreign customs. Despite these challenges, Inghilda continued on to university to become a poet, performer, and champion of her Northern Saami language and culture, and lives most of the year in Karesuando, on the border between Sweden and Finland, over two hundred kilometres north of the Arctic Circle. Her extended family continues its herding practices, despite challenges from Sweden’s hydroelectric industry and multinational mining companies, whose activities disrupt the ancient migratory pathways of the reindeer herds. The Saami, one of Europe’s last Indigenous cultures, and an ethnic minority in Sweden, are regaining their voice to fight for independence for their culture and traditional lands, which they refer to as Saapmi, but which the rest of the world refers to as Lapland. This visually innovative documentary by award-winning documentary maker Janet Merewether blends English and Saami languages to present Inghilda’s life and evocative poetry in a cinematic style, and will be engaging for festival, indigenous, student and broader television audiences around the world.
Earth Cry - A Profile of Peter Sculthorpe
Arts, Education, Environment, History, Human Rights, Indigenous, Rural, Social Justice
The film explores the remarkable life of the greatest living Australian composer, Peter Sculthorpe. At 85 Sculthorpe is a true legend in Australia – not simply because of the extraordinary range of the music he has written, but because he has been centre stage in Australia’s cultural life for over sixty years. In fact, the story he tells through his music, and the story we will examine in the film, is the story of Australia since the Second World War – the shift politically from being European oriented and still part of the British Empire, to being focused now on the ‘empires’ to the north – of Japan and China, Asia, Bali, Indonesia and Malaysia.\n\nSculthorpe’s understanding of landscape and environment, frequently being laid to waste by unthinking societies, how global warming is causing havoc to Australia’s ecology, and his relentless campaigning against the desecration of indigenous culture by successive Australian governments, mark Sculthorpe out as being of crucial significance in understanding Australia as it is today. Sculthorpe though his music has provided eloquent testimony, both as witness and as a warning, about the world he inhabits. “Ritual mourning for the plight of the land,” was how one critic described one of Sculthorpe’s most significant works, Earth Cry, which is also the title of our film.\n\nThe backbone of the film will be an extended interview with Sculthorpe himself, not merely biographical but ranging over his social and political concerns about Australian society today, illustrated by substantial examples of his music specially performed for the film. Principal among these will be Kakadu, a large orchestral work describing the exotic wilderness that is Northern Australia. Also Momento Mori, inspired by a visit to Easter Island with its enormous, brooding, enigmatic stone heads, which themselves represent both the indomitable nature of the human spirit, while at the same time being part of its greatest folly. In the creating of them, the land was deforested and impoverished. The Piano Concerto, one of his major works, especially the long elegiac 2nd movement with its hints of Japan and Indonesia, is both brutal in its melancholy, and yet unforgettable in its opulent bleakness.\n\nThis 120 minute film will the first full length international portrait of Peter Sculthorpe, a powerful prophet for Australia - a land whose history and culture and environment remains as yet unknown to most non-Australians.