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Western Arranda/Yankunytjatjara/Pitjantjatjara peoples

Mimili, South Australia, Australia born 1969

Priayangka 2015 Place made: Amata, South Australia, Australia
Materials & Technique: photographs, pigment inkjet print Support: archival paper

Dimensions: image 54.5 h x 37.3 w cm
Acknowledgement: Purchased 2016
Accession No: NGA 2016.231
Image rights: © Robert Fielding. Licensed by Viscopy
  • Purchased 2016

Fielding is an arts worker at Mimili Maku Arts in Northern Territory and won the 2015 Desart Art Worker Photography Prize Exhibition with this portrait of his daughter Priayangka in Muslim clothing. The success of the Desarts Prize indicates that photography has become a vital part of Indigenous practice across the country. This portrait draws on Fielding's rich family heritage. He has links back to Afghanistan, through his ancestors who helped open up Australia's interiors as cameleers. This work explores the concept of Milkali Kutju, literally 'one blood' in Pitjantjatjara. As he states of the picture: 'It's about beauty and it's about my daughter; and it's about being proud of your identity, your culture and your ethnical background.' As such, this portrait presents an intimate depiction of contemporary Indigenous adolescence, a portrait that acknowledges the complex historical and biographical narratives that inform Indigenous identity.

Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra