An art exhibition coinciding with NAIDOC Week celebrates Tasmanian Aboriginal protest movements.
A Colourful Past includes artefacts such as t-shirts, booklets for Aboriginal theatre shows, and manifesto-style documents; photographs of protests and demonstrations; original watercolours painted by Aboriginal artist Rodney Gardner; and prose and poetry.
Curator Adam Thompson said much of the memorabilia was not generally able to be viewed, with many items coming come from the private collections of Jimmy Everett and Karen Brown.
"The photos of Matt Newton's are around - they're very powerful images - but everything else you would never, ever get to see," he said. "And unless people had collected them, they wouldn't be around anymore."
"So it's a good opportunity for people to come and see some of the items in people's personal collections and get a bit of an understanding about our past."
Looking at the items and the recent history they represent made him proud of his heritage, he said.
"I love it," he said. "And I know these people. I really appreciate what they have done for us in the past, which has given us the opportunity to continue the struggle now."
"A lot of this is about recognising these people.
"Back in the seventies, people were thinking that Truganini was the last Tasmanian Aboriginal," he said. "So when our people were out marching in the streets, people were saying, 'who are these people?'"
Tasmanian Aboriginal protest activism's greatest achievements have been compensation for the stolen generation - which has only happened in Tasmania - land rights recognition, and identity recognition, he said.
A Colourful Past also features screenings of Blood of Life by Troy Melville and Jimmy Everett.
NAIDOC WEEK PUBLIC EVENTS
- A Colourful Past art exhibition at Sawtooth ARI, 160 Cimitiere Street, on display until July 27.
- Flag raising followed by cultural food, dancing, and other activities, 11.30am on Monday at the Tasmanian Aboriginal Corporation, 182 Charles Street.
- On-country trip to Deloraine and Liffey to learn about the significance of the land, leaving from the TAC at 9am on Thursday. This free event is open to the public, but the TAC asks attendees to call 6332 3800 in advance. Lunch is provided.
- A march will take place in Burnie around lunch time on Friday, with exact time and location to be confirmed. Call the TAC on 6332 3800 for the latest information.