Celebrate NAIDOC: Keep the Fire Burning! Blak, Loud and Proud

In the spirit of reconciliation, Wombat Brain acknowledges the Turrbal and Jagera people, Traditional Custodians of the land on which we predominately operate, along with the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their continued connections to land, water, culture, and community. We pay our respect to their elders pas, present, and emerging, and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today. 


(Keep the Fire Burning! Blak, Loud and Proud (2024) NAIDOCsource)

Gurumba bigi! (G'day - Yuggera - Meanjin (Brisbane Region))

This week NAIDOC is celebrated around the country, we come together each year to celebrate and learn more of the history, culture, and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

This years NAIDOC theme - Keep the Fire Burning! Blak, Loud and Proud - celebrates the unyielding spirit and enduring strength of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. We honour the ongoing fight for equity and encourage solidarity, amplifying the voices that have long been silenced. 

Deb Belyea captures the spirit of this years theme in her artwork Urapun Muy (One Fire). Created while reflecting on First Nations cultures, the artwork is a symbolism of culture, the fire that burns within, the fire that connects you to your people, your identity, and your spirituality. 

Through our collective efforts, we can forge a future where the stories, traditions, and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are cherished and celebrated, enriching the fabric of the nation with the oldest living culture in the world.  (NAIDOC, 2024)


Poster: Urapun Muy (One Fire) by artist Deb Belyea (source, 2024)

Urapun Muy by Deb Belyea SAMUAWGADHALGAL, TORRES STRAIT ‘Urapun Muy’, from the Kalaw Kawaw Ya dialect of the Top Western Islands of the Torres Strait, means ‘One Fire’. The title of this work pays homage to Torres Strait Islanders and Aboriginal people everywhere, as we all have that one fire: our passion for our culture. In this work, I have depicted the hands of our ancestors that have carefully dropped a burning ember on to a fire. This ember burns hot with intensity, stoking the flames, as it combines with the new fire. The linear detail shows the energy and power as cultural knowledge is transferred from our ancestors to us today. Culture is the fire that gives us knowledge, wisdom and purpose. It is our responsibility to maintain, practice, and pass on our fire to our future generations. Afterall, Culture keeps us Blak, Loud and Proud.

Ways to engage with and celebrate the history and cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples during NAIDOC Week and beyond:

      • Print your copy of the poster: here.
      • Listen to podcasts or music by First Nations artists and creatives.
      • Read a book by a First Nations author.
      • View more about the Artist of Urapun Muy (One Fire), Deb Belyea: here
      • View more of the artist Deb's work: here 

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