Michael CALLAGHANRay YOUNGREDBACK GRAPHIXMichael CALLAGHANRay YOUNGREDBACK GRAPHIXCAAMA - CENTRAL AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL MEDIA ASSOCIATION, The 8-kin network Enlarge 1 /1

Michael CALLAGHAN

Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia 1952 – Exeter, New South Wales, Australia 2012

designer

Ray YOUNG

Australia 1951 – 2009

designer

REDBACK GRAPHIX

Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia commenced 1979 – Sydney, New South Wales, Australia 1994

design studio (organisation)

Michael CALLAGHAN

Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia 1952 – Exeter, New South Wales, Australia 2012

printer

Ray YOUNG

Australia 1951 – 2009

printer

REDBACK GRAPHIX

Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia commenced 1979 – Sydney, New South Wales, Australia 1994

print workshop (organisation)

CAAMA - CENTRAL AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL MEDIA ASSOCIATION

Alice Springs, Northern Territory, Australia commenced 1980

client (organisation)

The 8-kin network 1985 Place made: Stuart Park Kiosk, Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia
Materials & Technique: prints, posters, ink; paper screenprint, printed in colour inks, from six stencils Support: matt white wove paper
Edition State: published state
Impression: undesignated impression as issued
Edition: print run approximately 500

Edition Notes: This was the first print to be produced using the new vacumn table that had been recently purchased by Redback Graphix.
Dimensions: printed image 102.0 h x 152.0 w cm sheet 102.0 h x 152.0 w cm
Acknowledgement: Gift of Alison Alder, 2008
Accession No: NGA 2008.798
Image rights: © Redback Graphix
Provenance:
  • Alison Alder.
  • Gift to the National Gallery of Australia, from Alison Alder, 2007.

This poster was designed and printed by Michael Callaghan and Ray Young at Redback Graphix (1979–94) in 1985 to promote the Central Australian Aboriginal radio network 8kin FM. It is typical of the posters that Redback Graphix produced in the 1980s, combining vibrant, incandescent colours with a photographically derived composition to deliver a political message.

Redback Graphix was not an arts collective or a public-access workshop, but a socially engaged design workshop whose iconic images advocated and documented immense social change. Established in 1979 by Michael Callaghan, the group designed and printed posters for community events and services for clients that shared their humanitarian concerns and sociopolitical agenda. Their posters cut to the heart of social inequities and demanded that audiences take note of a range of issues, including HIV/AIDS, unemployment, nuclear disarmament and Aboriginal land rights.

Redback Graphix artists were often involved in the community-based projects that their posters promoted, and they sought social change through grassroots communication. This reflected the approach of 8kin FM, which, through its broadcasting and recording of Aboriginal languages and music, fosters pride in Aboriginal culture and identity.

The 8-kin network was gifted to the National Gallery of Australia by Alison Alder, former co-director of Redback Graphix and current Director of Megalo Access Arts, a community-access printmaking studio and gallery in Canberra. It is an important addition to the National Gallery of Australia’s extensive collection of over 200 Redback Graphix posters.

This acquisition also coincides with the publication of Redback Graphix, written by Anna Zagala and published by the National Gallery of Australia.

 

Macushla Robinson
Curatorial Assistant, Australian Prints and Drawings
in artonview, issue 57, autumn 2009


in artonview, issue 57, autumn 2009