Ancient wisdom and quantum physicists make unlikely bedfellows: In quantum mechanics the observer determines (or even brings into being) what is observed, and so, too, for the Tiwis, who dissolve the distinction between themselves and the cosmos. In quantum physics, subatomic particles influence each other from a distance, and this tallies with the aboriginal view, in which people, animals, rocks, and trees all weave together in the same interwoven fabric.
Colors are primordial ideas, children of the aboriginal colorless light and its counterpart, colorless darkness Light, that first phenomenon of the world, reveals to us the spirit and the living soul of the world through colors.
Over 120 Aboriginal communities run their own health services - some have been doing so for 30 years. They struggle with difficult medical problems. They also try to deal with counselling, stolen generations issues, family relationships, violence, suicide prevention.
I think this is one of the problems that we're having in Indigenous affairs. Why we're not confronting the issues that are going to resolve it, the anger and the guilt. The anger on the Aboriginal side; the guilt on the non - Aboriginal side. We have got to deal with that, move on and start doing real work.
To me, no painter has ever quite understood the light, the distances, the aboriginal ghostliness of the American West as well as Maynard Dixon. The great mood of his work is solitude, the effect of land and space on people. While his work stands perfectly well on its claims to beauty, it offers a spiritual view of the West indispensable to anyone who would understand it.
The very word "change" has changed. When I was young--and not just because I was young--we looked forward with confident impatience to change. Planned, controlled, beneficent change would continue to clear slums, sweep up the remains of empire, raise living and educational standards, tidy away--firmly but kindly--the last aboriginals who still raved about martial glory or the pride of wealth. Now, as it seems to me, change is set almost exclusively in the minor key, change seen overwhelmingly as loss.
We are so fortunate, as Australians, to have among us the oldest continuing cultures in human history. Cultures that link our nation with deepest antiquity. We have Aboriginal rock art in the Kimberley that is as ancient as the great Palaeolithic cave paintings at Altamira and Lascaux in Europe.
The spirit of man is nomad, his blood bedouin, and love is the aboriginal tracker on the faded desert spoor of his lost self; and so I came to live my life not by conscious plan or prearranged design but as someone following the flight of a bird.
I have been told many times that when I win I make my people proud to be Australian. I am Aboriginal, I am one of them and every time I win or am honoured like this it should be an example to Aboriginal people who may think they have nowhere to go but down. But more importantly I am an Australian and I would like to make all Australians feel proud to be Australian. Ours is a truly multicultural society and should be united as such. I would like to believe that my successes are celebrated by all Australians, bringing... Read more »