Charmaine Mumbulla is the winner of the prestigious National NAIDOC poster competition for 2019. Charmaine cares deeply about the 2019 National NAIDOC theme, and about the celebration of Indigenous art and history.
As a Kaurna and Narungga woman, her family hails from Point Pearce in South Australia. Charmaine now lives with her partner and two young children in Sydney where the family run a creative agency called Mumbulla Creative, focusing on Indigenous design and education. Charmaine has had an interesting career, working as an educator and a social justice lawyer. Even though Charmaine grew up in an artistic family, her own creative passion did not begin until after she had children. She then studied graphic design in order to bring her creative ideas to life. Charmaine’s designs draw inspiration from the organic lines, textures and shapes found in the natural environment, which she contrasts with bright and vibrant colours.
Her artwork “Awaken” depicts early dawn light rising over Uluru, symbolising continued spiritual and unbroken connection to the land. The circles at the base of Uluru represent the historic gathering in May 2017 of over 250 people from many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nations who adopted the Uluru Statement from the Heart. Charmaine writes of the piece: “Our message, developed through generations, is echoed throughout the land: hear our voice and recognise our truth. We call for a new beginning, marked by a formal process of agreement and truth-telling, that will allow us to move forward together.”
When reflecting on this year’s NAIDOC theme “Voice, Treaty, Truth – Let’s work together for a shared future” Charmaine reflects on her family’s history and the contemporary challenges that remain: “Generations of my family lived on a mission and almost every aspect of their lives was controlled by government policies and laws. While my children and I enjoy many freedoms and rights that our ancestors did not, a treaty would provide a much stronger basis for self-determination moving forward. I’m really pleased about this year’s NAIDOC theme and hope that it continues our national discussion on a treaty.”
As a National NAIDOC poster winner, she is excited to be part of NAIDOC history. Charmaine will celebrate NAIDOC by attending the National NAIDOC Ball, taking place on Saturday, 6 July in Canberra. She also plans to celebrate NAIDOC Week by taking her children to the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence to celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and achievements with a community BBQ and entertainment. Charmaine will also be doing some workshops at her children’s school and making their favourite morning tea…Johnny cakes with lilly pilly jam.
To obtain your copy of the 2019 National NAIDOC poster you will need to contact your local regional network office by calling 1800 079 098 (toll-free) or by visiting indigenous.gov.au to locate your closest office address and phone number.