The Two Way Project: Building relationships with First Nations women in the ACT

The Two Way Project: Building relationships with First Nations women in the ACT
‘Buru’ by Darug artist Cassie Nicolitis, one of the completed designs through The Two Way Project screen printing workshop, SOAD textiles studio, February 2020. Photo: Annick Thomassin
Friday 2 October 2020

Some of the best fun we’ve had on campus this year was the continuation of The Two Way Project, a three year collaboration in community arts between staff and students in CASS and local First Nations women and their children. Over three days in January and February the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research (CAEPR) and School of Art and Design (SOAD) hosted the Women’s Group of Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service for a hugely successful screen printing workshop. The women were taught by some of the best in the business, with Associate Professor Alison Alder and Adele Cameron assisted by Lucy Irvine and third year student Sanne Carroll (SOAD), alongside project leads Dr Kirrily Jordan and Dr Annick Thomassin (CAEPR). The women produced some outstanding work, while helping CASS build ongoing relationships between ANU and First Nations communities in the region.

The Two Way Project is also working with Winnunga’s Mums & Bubs group. On 4 March a CASS team including Dr Jordan, Dr Thomassin and Denise Angelo (PhD Candidate, School of Literature, Languages and Linguistics) had a great day learning with the Mums & Bubs and Wiradjuri storyteller Larry Brandy. Together they helped make beautiful eagle wings to illustrate Larry’s stories.

These workshops followed on from a fantastic four days Dr Jordan spent with Winnunga Women’s Group in November 2019 when the women learnt from Guringai artist Amanda Jane Reynolds how to make a possum skin cloak. Recognising the significance of the occasion, Lanyon Homestead kindly donated use of their venue. The completed cloak will be proudly displayed at Winnunga’s new premises in Narrabundah.

The Two Way Project will resume in September 2020. Anyone interested in the work will be warmly welcomed to an exhibition of completed pieces at the SOAD Project Space gallery – currently scheduled for August 2021.


Updated:  2 October 2020/Responsible Officer:  Centre Director/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications