Celebration of NAIDOC in the City

Celebration of NAIDOC in the City

More than 2,000 Sydneysiders, visitors and city workers turned out for NAIDOC in the City at Hyde Park North yesterday, to celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and history.

Children and adults basked in the sun, while listening to rock, pop and hip hop tunes at the fun day out – part of the week-long national NAIDOC festival, running from 7–14 July.

There are still plenty of City of Sydney events to enjoy this week, but yesterday children enjoyed the dedicated Kidzone, performances by Move it Mob Style, comedy by Kevin Kropinyeri, animals from Taronga Zoo and artefacts from the Australian Museum.

The main stage included performances by multi-award winning hip-hop group Street Warriors, indie-pop duo Bow and Arrow and songstress Leah Flanagan.

Stallholders included Bush Secrets tea and coffee, Naked Flame wraps and the Vegie Patch food truck, which experimented with traditional Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander ingredients.

A marketplace included clothing, arts, crafts and homewares by Blacka Wear, Brothaboy Clothing, Journeyman Leathergoods, Bakarindi Bush Foods, Boomali Aboriginal Arts Cooperative, Boxa Clothing Company and Double Bridge Farm.

Some lucky people even took part in the City’s first NAIDOC Week bike tour, exploring Sydney’s rich Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander past on two wheels. The free one-hour tour took bike riders through the Rocks, stopping at Circular Quay where Aboriginal men once speared fish and first contact was made between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people.

Riders also explored public artworks by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists and passed the site of the first National Aborigines Day, which evolved into NAIDOC Week.

The City acknowledges the support of the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, Gilbert & Tobin and Festival Hire.

The theme for NAIDOC Week 2013 is We Value the Vision: Yirrkala Bark Petitions 1963, which will mark the 50th anniversary of this important turning point in traditional rights and ownership.

The two bark petitions were sent by the Yolngu people, of Yirrkala in northeast Arnhem Land, to the Australian House of Representatives in August 1963, protesting the Commonwealth’s granting of mining rights on land excised from Arnhem Land, and to recognise the land as belonging to the Yolngu people.

The petitions were the first traditional documents to be recognised by Australian law and set into motion a long process of legislative and constitutional reforms for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, as well as the nation’s acknowledgment of their land rights.

NAIDOC Week, from 7-14 July, celebrates the National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee, which grew from the first political groups of the 1920s.

Other NAIDOC Week events hosted by the City:

Aboriginal photography exhibition
1 July–31 August
Newtown Library, 8–10 Brown Street, Newtown
In conjunction with Amnesty International and Demand Dignity NSW, Tali Gallery in Rozelle has curated a travelling exhibition of photos showing cultural practices and art creation in remote communities.

Torres Strait Islander artist talk
6-8pm, Tuesday 9 July
urry Hills Neighbourhood Centre, Level 1, 405 Crown Street, Surry Hills
Zenadh-Kes artist Glen Mackie discusses how his culturally-rich Torres Strait Islander heritage inspires his intricate linoprint artworks, which will be on show in the library from 1 July–31 August. He’ll be followed by Patricia Adjei, the Copyright Agency’s Indigenous legal officer, who’ll discuss copyright, resale royalties, and cultural intellectual property rights. Free; bookings essential on 02 9265 7576

Indigenous youth linoprint workshop
2–4pm, Wednesday 10 July
Surry Hills Neighbourhood Centre, Level 1, 405 Crown Street, Surry Hills
Zenadh-Kes artist Glen Mackie, from the Torres Strait, hosts a printmaking workshop for Indigenous youth.
Free; bookings essential on 02 9265 7576

Aboriginal watercolours talk
6–7pm, Wednesday 10 July
Customs House Library, Level 2, 31 Alfred Street, Circular Quay
Di Stevens, curator at Tali Gallery, talks about Ngurratjuta Arts Centre in Alice Springs, which supports over 300 Aboriginal artists, with a special focus on the Hermannsburg school artists that continue the watercolour landscapes tradition. There are about 15 artists that paint in the watercolour style, being descendants of Albert Namatjira. Arrive early to see an exhibition of their works on level one, which runs 1 July–31 August.
Free; bookings essential on 02 9265 7576

Dindal, Centennial Park
Friday 12 July, midday-4pm
Don’t know what a dindal is? Then come along and learn about this traditional Indigenous cooking method where the food is buried underground in an earth oven. Welcome to Country is followed by a feast. Free.


For media inquiries or images, contact City of Sydney Senior Media Adviser Jodie Minus, phone 0467 803 815 or email jminus@cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au