Recent acquisitions of Indigenous material

Stephen Page – Oral History
Multi award - winning dancer and choreographer, Stephen has been the Artistic Director of Bangarra Dance Theatre since 1991. He is descended from the Nunkul people and the Munaldjali clan of the Yugambeh tribe.

Rose Chown – Personal Papers
Rose (1950-2010) was a fighter for Native Title and Aboriginal social justice. She was the founder of the Wiradjuri Welling Town Common Group – the first traditional owners in mainland Australia to make a claim under the Native Title Act. 

Penny Evans – Artists Books – Proof and mapping genealogy
Kamilaroi artist Penny Evans’ artwork incorporates ceramics and collage, as well as mixed media work on paper. Penny now lives on Bundjalung country and she describes her work as mapping her psychological and spiritual development. 

Bronwyn Bancroft – Illustrations – Kangaroo and Crocodile
These striking illustrations for the children’s book Kangaroo and Crocodile (2011) record Australian native animals and habitat.
Bundjalung artist Bronwyn Bancroft was born in Tenterfield NSW in 1958. She was a founding member of the Boomalli Aboriginal Artists Co-operative in 1987, one of Australia’s oldest Indigenous run artists organisations. Bronwyn’s art is renowned for its colourful and powerful imagery, and her striking designs have been used to illustrate more than 22 children’s books.

Michael Riley (1960-2004) – Photographic Essay
A Common Place are 15 dramatic portraits of Moree Murries taken by Indigenous contemporary artist Michael Riley.
In 1990 he visited his home town and established an outdoor studio where friends, family and community members could opt in to be photographed. The resulting images explore the relationship between photographer and photographed.
Ten smaller silver gelatine prints were acquired by the Library in 1993 from the Boomalli Aboriginal Artists Co-operative and were printed and signed by Michael. In 2016 the Library acquired five images as archival prints to complete the set.

Jagath Dheerasekara – Photographic Essay
Families Keep Us Going was developed utilising extensive collaboration with the Campbelltown community of south-west Sydney, this project used photography and oral histories to express belonging, identity, memory, culture and land. The images reflect the diversity of families and their connections to Country across Australia.

J.H. Bannatyne letter to his brother – Manuscript
The Myall Creek massacre occurred on the 10th June 1838 when 12 settlers came across a group of Wirrayaraay people who they captured and murdered. The settlers were subsequently tried and hanged for the crime.
This letter, dated 17th December 1838,  from JH Bannatyne of Sydney to Other Windsor Berry Esq. of England, one only a few firsthand accounts of the trial and the public mood of the time. It is written on one sheet in cross-hatched handwriting.