2020 Finalists

Nici CUMPSTON

Artist statement: ‘Great-grandmother Barka’ humanises our river and pays tribute to my maternal family. We are Barkandji, river people belonging to the Barka, our Darling River in western New South Wales.

Our Barka originates from the Great Dividing Range in eastern Australia and with the Murray River makes up the catchment known as the Murray Darling Basin. Forty different language groups are culturally responsible for this area comprising one million square kilometres.

These two river systems are a vital life force sustaining the environment and the livelihood of communities producing one third of Australia’s food supply.

These livelihoods are at risk. I create hand-coloured photographic portraits of trees to honour my personal responsibility, to speak up for our precious waterways and all that live along them.

nicicumpston.com

Great-grandmother Barka  2020
from the series Attesting
pigment ink-jet print, crayon, pencil
80.0 x 80.0 cm
courtesy of the artist and Michael Reid (Sydney)

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