9 June 2016
Vicki Couzens, a Victorian interdisciplinary artist, consultant and community cultural development teacher, has been recognised at the National Indigenous Arts Awards.
Vicki is the recipient of a fellowship providing her with $80,000 to develop an art project over two years. Her project, entitled yunggama (to give and receive), will consist of four parts:
- Soundscape featuring song and spoken word in her native language;
- Projections incorporating dance and movement;
- Cultural objects including hand-made possum cloaks, weavings and tools; and
- An illustrated collection of her writings.
Using storytelling to promote Aboriginal culture, Vicki hopes yunggama will help to preserve Indigenous cultural traditions and shine a spotlight on 'women's business'.
Vicki works across numerous artistic mediums such as printmaking, painting and public art, and is widely regarded for her possum cloak-making skills.
A descendant of the Gunditjmara and Kirrae Whurrong clans from the Western Districts of Victoria, Vicki commenced cloak-making in 1999.
She was the Artistic Director of the 2006 Commonwealth Games Possum Cloak Project; a role which saw her collaborate with 35 communities across the state.
The National Indigenous Arts Awards, honouring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists, are presented each year by the Australia Council for the Arts.
Previous Victorian fellowship recipients include writer Richard Frankland and musician Dave Arden.