Collaboration with artist Lucy Simpson

The Indigenous Engagement team has been very fortunate to have the opportunity of working with artist Lucy Simpson for the past few years. 

Lucy Simpson is a Yuwaalaraay woman (northwest New South Wales), based in Sydney and founder of design company Gaawaa Miyay [gaa-wah me-yay], a name which literally translates to 'river daughter' in Yuwaalaraay/Gamilaraay languages. Through her contemporary work in textile and graphic design, Lucy uses visual narratives and story to connect, share and celebrate Aboriginal cultures.

Rediscovering Indigenous Languages website

Lucy was engaged by the State Library to create a contemporary response to the Library's historical Aboriginal languages collection in a visual format. Lucy spent some time at the Library to experience the physical collections and to re-intepret the recorded words and meanings on a new and personal level. The result was three stunning artworks Lucy created  for the Rediscovering Indigenous Languages website: Gurayn, Message Sticks, and Spoken Lines


'Message stick' (detail) by Lucy Simpson, 2014. Digital artwork.

'Message stick' (detail) by Lucy Simpson, 2014. Digital artwork.

My Weekend with Pop

My Weekend with Pop: Stories in Aboriginal Languages is a series of short illustrated bilingual stories and educational resources, celebrating the diversity of Aboriginal languages in New South Wales. The resources include a digital storybook and curriculum resources for schools and teachers, and were developed in partnership with speakers from five different Aboriginal language groups and NSW Language and Culture NESTs including Dharawal, Gumbaynggirr, Gamilaraay, Paakantyi and Wiradjuri. Lucy has been working with the storytellers and with our team to create visuals which allowed the storybook to come to life.


a drawing of a boy and older man smiling

'Me and Pop' by Lucy Simpson, 2015. Digital artwork.

Indigenous Spaces in Library Places Strategy

The strategy Indigenous Spaces In Library Places: Building a Vibrant Public Library Network Inclusive of Indigenous Peoples and Communities has been developed by the Library to provide a network of support for public libraries to enhance services dedicated to their local Aboriginal population. A key area of this strategy focuses on the need to create more welcoming spaces for Aboriginal communities.

As part of this commitment, the Library installed Lucy’s artwork Gurayn (Flowers) on the walls of the Marie Bashir Reading Room and the Dalangilla Ngurra study room. 

a wall with a design represented

Marie Bashir reading room at the Library with Lucy Simpson artwork. 

'Gurayn' (detail) by Lucy Simpson, 2014. Digital artwork.