Welcome to Country by Uncle Bob Anderson at the opening of Singing Up Spirit of the Land. Raymond Walker eldest grandson of Oodgeroo of the Tribe Noonuccal reads his grandmothers poem Glad Tomorrow, blessing song and Garinga da Gana. He shares the translation. Film and editing by Paul Bishop.
As a child in the early 70s, I found poetry anthology My People by Kath Walker in my school library. First publishing in 1964 she was Australia’s first published Aboriginal poet.
Mining has been a part of the Minjerriba history since 1949. The sand mining industry on Stradbroke Island began with shovels and trucks on Main Beach. This developed over time to large-scale dredging operations and up until 2019 mineral leases covered approximately 60% of the Island. Lines in the Sand A History of Mineral Sandmining on Queensland’s Barrier Islands states that in 1997 the then mine owner CRL commissioned a new mine at the Ibis-Alpha ore-body.
“The new mine became a focal point for the anti-mining campaign and Brisbane-based conservation groups, including the QCC and the Greens, formed the Stradbroke Island Action Coalition (SIAC) which also included the QLC, now strongly opposed to mining. The SIAC organised a number of protests on the Island to highlight their concern including a public rally, held in August 1996,98followed by a blockade of the road to the new mine site which caused delays in the commissioning of the mine” (Sweett, p66).
The author goes onto say that the blockade continued for over a month, but ended after disagreements within QLC and lack of support from SIMO and community.
Figure 1. 1997 Around 60 people gathered at Dunwich March 26 to protest against sand mining. Image retrieved from FOSI Facebook Page.
Distinguished Ngugi elder and Quandamooka Traditional Owner Uncle Bob Anderson (Dr. Robert Anderson OAM) is the focus of art exhibition Singing Up Spirit of the Land. Contemporary digital and painted portrait work capture not just likeness of the elder, but spiritual meaning behind sand minings end on Minjerribah, North Stradbroke Island in 2019, a result of native title determinations granted to the Quandamooka peoples in 2011. The integrity of these artworks are testament to an enduring relationship between Aboriginal elder Uncle Bob Anderson and artist Jo Fay Duncan who identifies as an ecological artist and second generation Scot, residing on Quandamooka Country.
At 92, Uncle Bob is a living legend. His legacy concerns not only Native Title determinations over Quandamooka Country but also Aboriginal rights in the work place. These artworks are a tribute to him, an honouring of the ancestors and hope for a better world for our descendants.
This exhibition encapsulate a body of work that articulates a remarkable window, to the complex and living culture of those of and living on Quandamooka country; both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal at the time of minings end on Minjerribah (North Stradbroke Island). It bespeaks of reconciliation in action in Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal relations and in our collective relationship to Country – be it the homelands of our ancestors or those of anothers.
A six night sail was shortened to four thanks to a Brisbane COVID lock-down. Science Under Sail departed Manly and moored five nights at the Moreton Bay Research Station mooring at One Mile. Gathering data concerning the health and status of sea grass from the ocean floor, we chartered waters of the Rainbow and Rous Channels, Lazaret Gutter behind Peel Island, the Amity and Maroon Banks.
As an artist I work in many media from drawing and works on paper, to projection and sound scape. In contrast to the high tech of digital imaging recent works are assemblage sculptures simply made of drift wood and feathers all found on the wetlands and beaches of my island home. Attached are a gathering of these supernatural beings, suspended infront of shadows almost more alive than they are. Snake Bird to me is almost a creational being, there is an elephant posing as a dragonfly and another is the scull of a unicorn wolf. Winged Three Legged Horse promises sublime journeys through the ether. All were in a group exhibition part of Canaipa Mudlines: Environmental Art at Redlands Art Gallery, Nandeebie in the Quandamooka.
Drawing and tribute to Charlie Zuber a dear friend, colleague, artist and photographer.
SIMO (Stradbroke Island Management Organisation) has compiled this resource concerning Minjerribah’s aquifer an ongoing issue, with over 60% of the mainland Redland city fresh water coming from the island. Aside from it’s cultural significance it is only refreshed by way of rain water which is of particular concern during extended periods of draught.Continue reading “Fresh Water on Minjerribah”
Redlands2030 website reports
“The Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee Aboriginal Corporation (QYAC) recently explained its position on plans for development at Toondah Harbour.
QYAC is a Registered Prescribed Body Corporate created under the Native Title Act 1993to manage the recognised Native Title rights and interests of the Quandamooka People.
In 2015 the Redland City Bulletin reported “Stradbroke’s Quandamooka people back Cleveland Harbour revamp”. Since then, QYAC’s position on plans for development at Toondah Harbour has been the subject of some misconceptions.
In a carefully worded statement to many stakeholders (copy below), QYAC CEO Cameron Costello recently made a number of points which set out his organisation’s position on development at Toondah Harbour. Key points include:
- QYAC has consistently supported an upgrade of Toondah Harbour but only if this brings about economic development opportunities for the Quandamooka People.
- The Quandamooka People as Traditional Owners for the area on which the PDA is proposed should be appropriately consulted on the development.
- QYAC was not consulted by either the Redland City Council or the State Government prior to the Toondah Harbour Priority Development Area being declared in 2013.
- QYAC reiterates comments made in its 2014 submission to the State Government (copy below) that the “preservation of and enhancement of public and open space is important” and that the “development is likely to impact upon sensitive environmental areas, and this should be addressed including in particular any concerns with existing Ramsar Areas” .
- At no point has QYAC given support to any Master Plans provided by Walker Corporation.
- Allegations that QYAC has received a financial gift from Walker Corporation are incorrect and false
- QYAC lodged its Quandamooka Coast Claim (which includes the Toondah Harbour Area) in 2016 as a direct response to the Toondah Harbour PDA, to ensure that the Quandamooka People’s cultural heritage and native title rights and interests were protected”.
Full transcript is available at
Artists’ have worked in residence this past week at Turtle Swamp Wetlands, on Canaipa Island part of the 2019 Mudlines Residency. Studio gallery exhibition and poetry performance show-cased artworks and other musings generated through-out the year during onsite visits across the island to include locations at Rocky Point, Melomy’s wetland and littoral Shore south-east.