Christmas Birrimbirr (Christmas Spirit)[portfolio]

Gurrumuruwuy, Paul, Yangathu, Fiona, Deger, Jennifer, and Mackenzie, David. (2011) Christmas Birrimbirr (Christmas Spirit)[portfolio]. [NTRO Portfolio]

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This is a portfolio of works produced for the Christmas Birrimbirr (Christmas Spirit) exhibition at the Chan Contemporary Art Gallery, Darwin, Australia, 7-18 December 2011. Christmas Birrimbirr is a multimedia installation artwork, the first major production by the new media collective, Miyarrka Media, of which Deger is a founding member.

The portfolio consist of the following items in ResearchOnline@JCU:

Multimedia installation artwork:

Curated exhibition:

Exhibition catalogue:

See Related URLs below for active links.

Research Statement

Research Background This portfolio includes the creative works collaboratively produced by Deger as part of Miyarrka Media, a collective of Yolngu and non-Indigenous artists and filmmakers based in the community of Gapuwiyak in Arnhem Land. Deger's position within the collective she co-founded has been the basis for a range of collaborative and experimental research projects including this one which stands as the major outcome of her ARC Postdoctoral Fellowship.
Research Contribution This project pioneers new forms of shared and practice-led anthropology. As a formal experiment between sensuous ethnography, documentary and Yolngu ritual it makes a performative, phenomenological claims for the affective force of images—both video and photographic. By creating an immersive multi-screened environment the work extends the potential of visual anthropology as a sensuous method as advocated by leading scholars such as McDougall, Stoller and Howes; while the emphasis on creativity and collaboration brings a new dimension to the studies of Indigenous media (see Michaels; Ginsburg; Deger).
Research Significance Christmas Birrimbirr became the first new media art installation created and curated in a remote Aboriginal community. Deger, Gurrumuruwuy and MacKenzie have presented on this work internationally; it has resulted also in invitations to contribute to international publications on anthropology and art practice edited by leading scholars in this sub-discipline. The project formed the basis of a significantly expanded project commissioned for the opening of the new Moesgaard Museum in Denmark in 2014.
Item ID: 37450
Item Type: NTRO Portfolio
Media of Output: multimedia installation artwork, curated exhibition, exhibition catalogue
Keywords: collaborative methods, anthropology and art, Aboriginal art, ethnographic film, museum studies
Related URLs:
Sensitivity Note: This work contains images of Aboriginal people. Hearing or seeing names or seeing images of deceased persons might cause sadness or distress, particularly to the relatives of these people. This work, however, has been created by, and with permission from, close relatives of these deceased people, with the specific intention of producing a culturally specific emotional response called warwuwyun (worry). The explicit aim in doing so is to ’share’ these difficult feelings and so generate the grounds of connection across time, generations and cultures.
Funders: Australian Research Council (ARC), Centre for Contemporary Arts and Politics (UNSW), Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, Ian Potter Foundation, East Arnhem Shire, Arnhem Land Progress Association, Darwin Visual Arts Assoc, NT
Date Deposited: 19 Feb 2015 00:31
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1601 Anthropology > 160104 Social and Cultural Anthropology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9502 Communication > 950201 Communication Across Languages and Culture @ 50%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970116 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society @ 30%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970119 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of the Creative Arts and Writing @ 20%
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