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Barbara Comeagain, Emu in the Sky.

Barbara Comeagain, Emu in the Sky.

A range of original artworks by Indigenous artists from WA’s Mid West will touch down in South Africa this week.

The exhibition, Ilgarijiri – things belonging to the sky, features the work of 30 indigenous artists living in the Mid West, where Australian scientists hope the next generation radio telescope—the Square Kilometre Array (SKA)—will be built.

The exhibition—a joint project between ICRAR’s Professor Steven Tingay, and staff and artists of Yamaji Art, Geraldton—was developed last year as part of the Year of Astronomy.

ICRAR Deputy Director, Professor Tingay, said the exhibition would be displayed in Cape Town as part of the Communicating Astronomy to the Public 2010 conference.

“It’s wonderful to be able to bring the Indigenous stories of the night sky to an international audience and showcase the outstanding talents of these artists,” he said.

“The Ilgarijiri project has been a two-way learning process for both the artists and the astronomers.

“To be able to finish the project with an exhibition in Cape Town is a great opportunity, as South Africa is the other candidate to be the home of the SKA.”

Previously shown in the Geraldton Regional Art Gallery, Curtin’s Resources and Chemistry Precinct and the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) in Canberra, the successful exhibition has been seen by several thousand people.

Professor Tingay will be presenting a paper at the conference describing the Ilgarijiri project and its outcomes.