Australian First Nations’ arts and cultural practices and cosmological beliefs span 60,000+ years, with Australian First Nations' Peoples standing firm in the belief that they have been here since deep time associated with Australian First Nations' Ancestral Beings, creation stories and cosmologies. This course explores the diversity of pre-contact, post-contact Australian First Nations' arts and cultural manifestations, from customary to contemporary representations, incorporating diverse media and trans-disciplinary platforms.
The course in Australian First Nations’ visual arts and culture has three main aims:
* Provide students with basic geographical, historical and contextual frameworks for the study of Australian First Nations’ visual arts and culture in mainland Australia, Tasmania and the Torres Strait Islands.
* Familiarise students with concepts that are fundamental to Australian First Nations’ understandings of the interconnected relationships between art, culture and life, both historically (pre- and early post-contact, up to the early 20th century) and in a contemporary (early 20th - present-day) context.
* Assist students in developing ideas about how contemporary Australian First Peoples’ visual arts and cultures contribute to cross-cultural critical theory, representation and identity, and trans-disciplinary practice and research.
Wherever possible collections and exhibitions at national arts, cultural, social history and archival institutions are used as part of the teaching and learning experience.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- identify historical and geographical origins of Australian First Nations’ Visual Arts and Culture and Cultural Practices;
- conduct a culturally relevant appreciation of Australian First Nations’ Visual Arts and Culture and Cultural Practices;
- develop cross-cultural awareness in the processes of interpretation of Australian First Nations’ Visual Arts and Culture and Cultural Practices;
- research and access information on Australian First Nations’ Visual Arts and Culture and Cultural Practices;
- speak and write with appropriate cultural sensitivity and awareness on Australian First Nations’ Visual Arts and Culture and Cultural Practices; and
- gain a critical understanding of some of the major issues of debate concerning Australian First Nations’ Visual Arts and Culture and Cultural Practices.
Relevant readings, resources and tasks will be uploaded to Wattle throughout the semester.
- Oral presentation (10 mins) of 1500 word paper (30) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
- Research essay, 3000 words (40) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6]
- Review, 1500 words (20) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6]
- Tutorial and Online Forum participation (10) [LO 1,3,5]
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130 hours of total student learning time made up from: a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 24 hours of lectures and 12 hours of tutorials; and b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing. Contact hours may include visits to major art institutions in Canberra.
Requisite and Incompatibility
Caruana, Wally, & Cubillo, Franchesca, 'Introduction to Aboriginal Art', from 'Indigenous Australia: Masterworks from the National Gallery of Australia', 2017
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