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Undertow 2022

Sonja Carmichael &
Elisa Jane Carmichael

Dabiyil Bajara, 2021, by mother/daughter team Sonja and Elisa Jane Carmichael, is comprised of six expansive cyanotype works on cotton and a selection of forms woven in the enduring traditions of Quandamooka women which celebrate their Sea Country. This installation can be read as a map that takes us on a journey of Quandamooka Country, above and below waterlines, from one side of Minjerribah (North Stradbroke Island, Queensland) to the other. From places rich in sea life that have provided for custodians, to places of healing that have been visited by women since the beginning. The title of the work, Dabiyil Bajara translates to ‘water footprints’, a poetic reflection to the marks we make, and leave, if only for fleeting moments, upon and within vessels of water.

Created during the last few weeks of Elisa-Jane’s pregnancy and at the time of the passing of Sonja’s sister, the work is a meditation on the cycles of life, on ancestral knowledge and on the legacies of First Nations women, who continue to weave knowledge from the past into hopeful futures, with care, courage, and compassion.

visit FOUND at Fremantle Arts Centre

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1 Finnerty Street
Western Australia