Our first post-flu outing has been a visit to the Aboriginal Museum in our town. We have been regular visitors of this museum. I remember a visit when my daughter was still young. There was a large frame on the floor filled with soft, white sand. Children were allowed to make a sand painting by tracing their fingers through the soft sand. Surely the large aboriginal paintings worked their inspiring magic and boy what fun it was to make a sand painting in a museum! Now don’t think kids mistook it for a sandpit. Children and youngsters are very conscious when they are invited to participate in something unique and inspiring.
During our latest visit the sand was replaced by soft felt shapes. These shapes represent signs that Aboriginals use as their sign language. Again we were invited to make our own drawing. We used snakes that do tell us where under water channels can be found. We used water-stream signs to communicate to our fellow tribesmen where to dig for water. The U-shape representing tribe members, along with footprints of kangaroos, made our painting busy and fun.
Although this museum enchantingly transports you to Australia and invites you to enter the mind of Aboriginals, such hands-on work done with youngsters is one of the best things of a museum. It transforms the ‘observer of art’ in to the ‘creator of art’ and that is a valuable experience.
Needless to say, this a very colourful museum and a highly enjoyable one. There hasn’t been one visit over the last years that didn’t meet our expectations. The continuous flow of new art work is delightful. The documentaries are highly interesting and the shop is extremely hard to pass. Aboriginal art is like most native art, art for the heart. It is about Dream-time and about Storytelling. It shows dream stories, yet they are real, and above all, they show a language that needs to be used, understood, and practised to stay alive.
What I especially like is the wood-art by the Aboriginals. I love to see a simple piece of dry wood that has been recognized by an Aboriginal as a typical Australian bird and decorated as such. You need an eye to see a bird in a dead piece of wood. But ones it is brought out by decorating it with stripes and dots, it is hard to imagine the wood didn’t on purpose shaped itself as a bird.
With the flu still consuming much of our energy, we can’t have enough colourful inspiration to reload our artistic batteries. I hope you have enjoyed our brief visit to the Aboriginal Museum. If you need to saunter around a bit more, here is the web-page of the museum. Enjoy!
I wish all my readers who are dealing with flu a speedy recovery. Drink lots of clear water, rest, and allow yourself enough dream time.