RITUAL the past in the present extends the Gallery’s research interest in contemporary art practices that explore narratives around issues of Australian Indigenous and global black identity in the world’s tropic zone.
RITUAL explores relationships between contemporary Indigenous art and ritual within the global context of transcultural ritual practices in the Asia Pacific region.
The defining characteristic of ritual, as a recurrent act based on the concept of passage and transformation to bring the past into the present, is explored through artworks that engage with social, divinatory and cyclical rituals and respond to the practice, processes and performative nature of rituals.
The juxtaposition of commissioned and loan works by Australian Indigenous and Asia Pacific artists opens up new artistic dialogues around shared understandings of cultural knowledge and beliefs, while exploring contemporary issues around identity and cultural continuity.
This ambitious project has involved Gallery curators Julietta Park and Teho Ropeyarn and commissioned writers, Freja Carmichael, Michael Do and Emma Loban.
In his essay A prayer to be haunted, Michael Do explains the cultural connectivity, shared issues and ritualistic practices of artists whose works respond to the complex and diverse rituals of the Asia Pacific region - Abdul Abdullah, Greg Semu, Trina Lealavaa, Phuong Ngo, Jumaadi, Park Chan-Kyong, Koji Ryui, Taloi Havini and Michael Toisuta.
Presented in partnership with Cairns Indigenous Art Fair (CIAF).