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October 20, 2021

Where Women Lead – Peace Follows

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Exhibiting artists: Kelly Tierney, Julie Williams, Nickolla Clark and Belle Arnold. Photo Tree Faerie.

There is a very special event this year in Mullumimby for International Women’s Day. A local Aboriginal cultural arts group, the Bunyarra Culture Collective, are hosting a unique collaboration of women showcasing strength, cultural stories and the way towards peace.

Dubay Leadership. Nickolla Clark.

Held at the Mullumbimby District Neighbourhood Centre, the event called Where Women Lead, Peace Follows will include an art exhibition, dance showcase and live music, as well as spoken work and a DJ set.

This event was created to celebrate the diversity and collaboration the Bunyarra Culture Collective has enabled.

Event organiser Belle Arnold says the Collective wanted to do something to celebrate the strength of Dubay – aboriginal women in our community.

‘We also want to highlight the women who support us every day in the work we do to revitalise our culture,’ she said ‘We will also showcase a body of work from recent textile workshops with Anne Leon – Recreating Collaborative Culture.’

Local Arakwal woman Nickolla Clark, who will exhibit her artwork and dance on the day, says that Bunyarra has collaborated with many community organisations so others can learn about Indigenous cultural ways and practices.

‘Behind all these people are strong women taking the lead to provide many services. Giving women a voice and time to lead great community work has been discouraged in the past, so now is our time to lead, as peace will follow collectively with women guiding us to showcase our power, art and voice.’

Dubay Yowarl. Bell Budden.

Local musician Áine Tyrrell will also be performing at the event. Áine says women’s voices and stories have been a missing part of the conversation globally for so long that if we truly want peace, we must start providing spaces for women to be inspired to take the lead.

‘By design colonisation and the patriarchy have silenced the knowledge of women, especially Indigenous women, yet they have survived. Their art and culture inspires in spite of those obstacles. I am honoured to learn alongside these women and be a part of a day that shows us a new way forward.

Ms Arnold says that there is a lot of grief and anger in this country because of the violence against women. ‘This event will highlight our strengths, especially when we stand together. International Women’s Day is a time to celebrate our strengths and achievements even though we have so far to go.’

Performers, speakers and artists in this collaboration include Delta Kay, Mandy Nolan, Áine Tyrrell, Redbelly, Rachel Heaton, Nickolla Clark, Belle Buden, Kelly Tierney, Elle Davidson, Kaitlyn Clark, Bindimu Currie, Julie Williams, Karma Barnes, Anne Leon, Leah Walke and the Tree Faerie.

Where Women Lead Peace Follows opens this Sunday, International Women’s Day, from 5pm at the Mullumbimby Neighbourhood Centre. The exhibition is open from 10am to 4pm Monday 9 to Wednesday 11 March.

Delta on the Rocks. Photo Tree Faerie.

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