Walking the same lines by alendar

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Walking the same lines

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									Strength in
numbers
Supporting FORM’s efforts in revealing the artistic
talent of South Hedland’s Indigenous artists are
two committed champions to the cause. The Let’s
Get Started! workshop series has been enabled by
funding partners LandCorp and BHP Billiton Iron Ore.
For over two years, BHP Billiton Iron Ore has been
the benefactor behind many aspects of FORM’s
work in the Hedland area, not least the greening
of the West End, the Courthouse Gallery and its
exhibitions, and also the P.H.otography program,
the results of which will proudly be displayed in a
blockbuster exhibition opening at the Gallery on
Friday 20 February, to which all are welcome.
Richard O’Connell, BHP Billiton Iron Ore’s Regional
Manager for Sustainability and Community
Relations remarks that the company’s partnership
with FORM ‘continues to deliver significant
benefits across the Pilbara; I’m impressed with
what has been achieved so far in Hedland. It’s
impossible not to be optimistic and excited by the
potential of more opportunities to showcase the
talents of Pilbara people.’
LandCorp’s support for FORM’s Pilbara activities
has arrived more recently but is no less welcome
for that! LandCorp is the state government’s
land developer, and is involved in projects and
developments at Pretty Pool, Wedgefield and in
South Hedland. LandCorp will be backing further
iterations of the P.H.otography program, as well as
joining BHP Billiton Iron Ore in supporting the Let’s
Get Started! workshops.




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hand/paintbrush coordination: l to r Callum Wilson,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Andrew Embley, Brad Smith and Ashley Hansen




                                                                                                                                                                                 THE
                                                                       Artists and Players

                                                                                                                                                                                 EAGLES
Walking the same lines
What does it mean when we blur the lines between different skill sets and ways
of learning?
When the Eagles players visited the Spinifex Hill Artists the other week, and tried
                                                                                        Art and sport are democratic pursuits: it doesn’t matter where you come from and
                                                                                        anyone can have a go.
                                                                                        Feedback from the Let’s Get Started! workshop participants has revealed that not
                                                                                        only are they gaining technical and artistic skills but also experiencing positive
                                                                                                                                                                                 HAVE LANDED
                                                                                                                                                                                 for an art workshop with the Spinifex Hill Artists in South Hedland.
their hands at portrait-painting, it was not just about asking people to step out of
their comfort zone for an hour or two.                                                  social, professional and health benefits.
                                                                                        Like sport, art can create pathways to positive personal development and self-           There can hardly have been a person in Port or South Hedland
   “We’re not here for ourselves;                                                       esteem. How powerful it could be if there were integrated programs harnessing
                                                                                        the best of both worlds. Sport creates great role models, especially for young           unaware of the fact that a group of players from the West Coast Eagles
     we’re here for everyone.”                                                          people, and art has the potential to do the same thing.
                            IRENE COFFIN, ARTIST                                        Wouldn’t it be great if there were more crossovers between sport and culture? If there   was in town the other week...
                                                                                        were regular programs encouraging a cross-pollination of skills and experience?
It was about a profound exchange of perspective and experience. An exchange
where skills and discipline fundamental to both sport and art could share a             Let’s get started. Let’s create some of those opportunities for Hedland.                 Read on to find to find out what happened...
platform, and give rise to mutual respect.
                                                                                                                               All text written and edited by Mags Webster
                                                                  scene@thecourthouse

                                                                                                                                                                                   Spinifex Hill Arts: the start of a new
                                                                                                                                                                                   story for Hedland’s Indigenous artists


  When
    The
  Eagles landed                                                                                                            A convocation of Eagles and a collection of paintings




T
       aking part on their annual                            the room were intense. Some of the boys took notes        ‘They gave doing their self-portrait a real good shot
                                                             to remind them as they worked of the simple rules of      (we even took a few sneaky photos of Eagles with
       ‘community camp’ the 14                               face proportions. Colours started to flow alongside       their tongues poking out from sheer concentration!)’
       players met lots of locals                            creativity, and the results were highly individual.
                                                                                                                       West Australian Country Football League
                                                             Said midfielder Scott Selwood, one of the rookie
       when they visited schools                             portraitists:
                                                                                                                       development manager Dale Ballantyne commented
                                                                                                                       that the attention and application demanded of
and shopping centres over the                                ‘It was really good to learn about where the ladies       players during training, and the discipline which is
                                                             came from and it was a very different experience and
three-day visit to Hedland.                                  one I’ll treasure for a long time.’
                                                                                                                       so essential to them maintaining their competitive
                                                                                                                       edge was also much in evidence during the class.            Jon Aitchison at work on his painting The Earth                                          Clockwise left: Winnie Sampri, Kathy Simpson, Irene Coffin, Cleave Indich and Max George

For seven of the players, one of the activities had a                                                                  Hence the tongues poking out while painting –
distinctly cultural flavour. Instead of taking marks,
they were making marks, joining in for a Friday                     “The Eagles                                        which apparently several of the players also do when
                                                                                                                       playing football!                                                  “I’M PROUD TO BE ONE OF THE NEW ‘SPINIFEX HILL’ ARTISTS.
                                                                     visit was
afternoon workshop session with Spinifex Hill Arts,                                                                    ‘For the artists it was such a positive encounter,                           I HAVE NEVER DONE ART IN MY LIFE UNTIL NOW. I’M ENJOYING MAKING NEW FRIENDS”
a talented collective of emerging and established                                                                      being such a small group everyone was relaxed and
Indigenous artists, based in South Hedland.                                                                            got to spend some quality time sharing experiences                                                                                   M.A.D. GROUP MEMBER

                                                                      SUCH a

                                                                                                                                                                                   S
These artists have been gathering since November                                                                       and stories with the Eagles,’ observed co-teacher
2008, as part of FORM’s Let’s Get Started professional                                                                 Sara Barnes.
                                                                                                                                                                                         omething special is                                                                                               The art work is stylish, individual, contemporary. Soon
development program specifically for Indigenous
artists. Currently using rooms at the Pundulmurra TAFE
campus, this core collective has steadily progressed
                                                                      positive                                         And so are there any rising art stars in the Eagles
                                                                                                                       ranks? Well, they would probably need a few more                  unfolding in South
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                “A rainbow is
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           it will be shared with the wider community: there are
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           plans to stage an exhibition of the artists’ work at the

                                                                    experience                                                                                                           Hedland, where local
                                                                                                                       sessions at Spinifex Hill Arts before that became clear.                                                                                                                            Courthouse Gallery, a little later this year.
to a level of competence where a visit from the state’s
elite athletes did not disrupt the creative flow, and
could be taken smoothly in it’s stride.
                                                                        – both for the
                                                                                                                       But whatever they might have lacked in artistic talent
                                                                                                                       the other week, they more than made up for through
                                                                                                                       their engagement and enthusiasm. As Helen Ansell
                                                                                                                                                                                         talent is flourishing and
                                                                                                                                                                                   forming a strong artistic identity.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                going to come                                              Four sessions on and the group has doubled in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           size to include ladies from Mothers Against Drugs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  knocking
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           (MAD), and there is a growing sense of solidarity and
Following a Welcome to Country, gracefully                                                                             remarked of the players:
delivered by Anne Sibasido, and about ten minutes                        players and                                   ‘They really are great role models to our community
                                                                                                                                                                                   Late last year, FORM, the managers of the Courthouse
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           identity among the participants. As a collective, they
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           feel established enough to have chosen a name for
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 on our door
of mingling and chatting with the artists, it was                                                                                                                                  Gallery, initiated a program of arts development
down to work for everyone.                                              the artists...”                                and it was so exciting to see them taking part and in
                                                                                                                       doing so – promoting – the arts in our society.’
                                                                                                                                                                                   workshops, to support the production and marketing
                                                                                                                                                                                   of culturally appropriate works of art by Hedland’s
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           themselves: Spinifex Hill Arts.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Spinifex Hill is a former, alternative name for Port
Under the tutelage of teachers Helen Ansell and Sara
Barnes, and the watchful eyes and encouragement
of the artists, players Andrew Embley, Ashley
                                                             ‘The Eagles visit was SUCH a positive experience –
                                                             both for the players and the artists and I don’t think
                                                                                                                       And what did the artists make of the afternoon’s
                                                                                                                       activity? Last word goes to Irene Coffin:
                                                                                                                                                                                   Indigenous artists.
                                                                                                                                                                                   The program kicked off with Let’s Get Started!, a series
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                asking for his                                             Hedland. Its adoption by the artists acknowledges
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           the many pathways each has travelled in order to

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                colours back”
                                                             either side will forget it for a long time,’ says Helen                                                                                                                                                                                       arrive at this moment: a moment where they share
Hansen, Callum Wilson, Luke Shuey, Mitch Brown,                                                                        ‘Well I just think it’s fantastic – and you know what       of week-long painting sessions for beginners, mid-                                                                      space, purpose, experience and story. And also
Scott Selwood and Tony Notte, plus Eagles school             Ansell. ‘The footballers were very polite and friendly    makes it even better? Having the Eagles!’                   career and established artists. Around eight men and
                                                             to the artists and took a real interest in their work.’                                                                                                                                                                                       boundless potential for the future.
development officer Brad Smith found themselves                                                                                                                                    women, all from differing backgrounds, language
                                                                                                                                                                                   groups and levels of experience, gathered together                MAX GEORGE, SPINIFEX HILL ARTIST
abandoning the turf of the oval for a different type of                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    “We’re on the verge of something”
playing surface: canvas.                                                                                                                                                           in rooms at Pundulmurra College, and embarked
                                                                                                                                                                                   on an intense and enriching process of professional
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Cleave Indich, Spinifex Hill Artist
Taking their places around the room with six of the                                                                                                                                development and self-expression.
artists (Irene Coffin, Lesley Kelly, Valda Sear, Anne
Sibasido, Esther Quintal and Winnie Sampri) the boys                                                                                                                               The teachers who have been guiding this process are
were coached through a portrait painting class. Most                                                                                                                               all from regional art centre backgrounds, and have a
of the Eagles had not done any form of art class since                                                                                                                             strong rapport with Indigenous artists of the Pilbara.
their schooldays, but once Helen started to talk them                                                                                                                              One of them, Helen Ansell, commented:
through the process, the focus and concentration in                                                                                                                                ‘I immediately recognised that there already exists
                                                                                                                                                                                   a clear group of motivated artists who have been
                                                                                                                                                                                   painting for years and who are ready to move onto
                                                                                                                                                                                   the ‘next stage’ of developing as an established group
                                                                                                                                                                                   within the community...I also believe that as a core
                                                                                                                                                                                   group these artists will attract many other – perhaps
                                                                                                                                                                                   undiscovered – artists within the community as a
                                                                                                                                                                                   strong group and identity is established.’
                                                                                                                                                                                   There are signs that these workshops will lead to great
                                                                                                                                                                                   personal and professional growth for the participants;
                                                                                                                                                                                   and in appreciating their effort and their art, the
                                                                                                                                                                                   Hedland community at large will be celebrating a
The concentration is intense: l to r: Brad Smith, Ashley Hansen, Luke Shuey and Scott Selwood                                                                                      cultural and social success story of its own.              Trying out new techniques: l to r: Cleave Indich, Max George, Jon Aitchison and Kathy Simpson

								
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