The Strelley Mob

John Curtin Gallery 9 May - 8 Jul 2024

Animation and historical archive immerses us in Pilbara history and language.

The Strelley Mob are the descendants of the Pilbara pastoral workers who went on strike in 1946 and went on to run their own mines and stations. The stories of the Strelley Mob – of hunting, pearl shell gathering, mining and organising themselves against a hostile government – were written and illustrated by elders for their children when they opened their own school. These original story books are jewels of Pilbara history, artefacts of a creative community making their own art and literature after generations of struggle. Their drawings, including some the first known art by Nyaparu (William) Gardiner, are here newly animated and projected alongside paintings and artefacts that bring the history of the Strelley Mob to life.

Exhibition open from 9 May – 8 July 2024

Supported By: Lotterywest

Project Sponsors: Nomads Charitable and Educational Foundation, The Australian Research Council, DLGSC Wangka Maya Pilbara Aboriginal Language Centre and the School of Design, University of Western Australia

Sharon Hale, Jullie Ziegenhardt and Vladimir Todorovic, 
Japartulupa pipilu ngaju kanyanyipulu kuyikarti / Father and mother take me to get meat, 2023, animation, dimensions variable.