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Thursday, September 14, 2017

Parrtjima expands creative program in Alice Springs


New installation, artist talks and live music added
Alice Springs: 22 September – 1 October 2017



A new installation and expanded program of events has been announced for Parrtjima – A Festival in Light, the extraordinary 10-night celebration of Central Australian art and culture illuminating Alice Springs from Friday, 22 September to Sunday, 1 October 2017.

The festival hub (Apurte-irretyeke* [Getting Together]) will come to life with a curated program of live talks, events and music by local musicians each weekend, bringing the stories, sounds and rhythms of Central Australia – home of the Arrernte of Mparntwe – to the free public event.

In addition to the breathtaking installations and illumination of the majestic MacDonnell Ranges already announced, Medicine Space (Awelya-akerte Apmere [Medicine Country]) is a new installation featuring artwork by Artists of Ampilatwatja that will transform Alice Springs Desert Park into a mesmerising outdoor gallery of light and sound.

Using state-of-the-art LED luminaires, Medicine Space projects a series of artworks by Ampilatwatja artists Michelle Pula Holmes, Julieanne Ngwarraye Morton and Kathleen Nanima Rambler onto hanging semi-transparent fabric, suspended in the desert and moving freely in the breeze, as images magically appear and disappear. 

The Artists of Ampilatwatja are famous for their unique paintings of desert landscapes, bushfoods, bush medicine, family gathering spaces and works on lore, and their distinct painting style features fine dots and bright, child-like figurative depictions.

Parrtjima curator and renowned First Nations creative director Rhoda Roberts OA, said: “We’re thrilled to welcome more senior Aboriginal artists to the Parrtjima 2017 festival program to share their unique artmaking and culture with the world.

“The addition of Medicine Space and the expanded festival knowledge program we have curated will truly deepen the visitor experience and provide another platform for the artists and respected Arrernte Elders to holistically share their art, knowledge and culture.”

Roberts worked closely with Aboriginal artists and art centres from across the desert region to develop the festival program, with endorsement from the Parrtjima Festival Reference Group and ongoing consultation with a wider network of respected Arrernte persons.

Significant Traditional Owner (Apmereke-artweye of Mparntwe), Parrtjima Festival Reference Group advisor and festival participant, Benedict Kngwarraye Stevens said: “The most important thing for us is to keep passing on our culture to the coming generations. Parrtjima helps us show the world that this is Arrernte country and how beautiful it is.

“Parrtjima shows people that the country is alive, so that visitors and all the non-Arrernte people who live here can have deeper respect for it, and start to see how much it means to us. We want people to understand that it has always been a part of us. Parrtjima helps our young people stand tall in front of the world to say, ‘This is our country, this is our art, and this is our culture – and it is good’.”

An original audio soundscape featuring voice recordings of senior Arrernte people, including Benedict Kngwarraye Stevens, Peter Peltharre Wallace and Warren H. Mpetjana Williams, will accompany the stunning illumination of the MacDonnell Ranges entitled, The Heartbeat of Elements of Country (Apmere Ahelhe Itethe [All Country is Alive]).

The audio soundtrack was recorded by Aboriginal-owned Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association (CAAMA), as part of a three-year agreement to deliver a fully integrated audio-visual experience at Parrtjima.

The partnership will allow local suppliers to take ownership of the spectacular installation of Grounded (Apmere Melangke [There’s No Place Like Home]); acquiring world class equipment and expertise and will see the implementation of a training program to develop a long-term crew of Aboriginal employees for the event.

Visitors are asked to register their attendance for sessions held each night between 5:00pm and 10:30pm Friday to Sunday, and one of four sessions held between 6:30pm and 10:30pm Monday to Thursday during the festival. A free park ‘n ride shuttle bus is available to and from the festival at Alice Springs Desert Park, stopping at several locations around Alice Springs.

Parrtjima (pronounced Par-CHee-ma) comes from the Arrernte group of languages, which has many dialects and ways of spelling words. In Central and Eastern Arrernte, ‘apateme’ means ‘to have trouble understanding something’ and ‘pwarrtyeme’ means ‘to shine’. The event name suggests shedding both light and understanding on a subject.

The first Aboriginal light festival of its kind in the world, Parrtjima is proudly supported by the Northern Territory Government and event partners Northern Territory Major Events Company, AGB Events, Alice Springs Desert Park, Alice Springs Town Council, Thrifty Rent-a-Car, Alice in the Territory and Diggamen Civil Contracting.

Join the conversation with #ParrtjimaAustralia. For more information and to register to attend this free event, please visit www.parrtjimaaustralia.com.au.



*Arrernte translations and meanings of installation names and event program names.
EVENT DETAILS
Event                Parrtjima – A Festival in Light
Date                 22 September – 1 October 2017
Time                5:00pm – 10:30pm Friday to Sunday
                          6:30pm – 10:30pm Monday to Thursday
Location           Alice Springs Desert Park, Larapinta Drive, Alice Springs, NT
Entry               Free with registration
URL                 www.parrtjimaaustralia.com.au


PARRTJIMA – A FESTIVAL IN LIGHT 2017 KNOWLEDGE PROGRAM

Friday, 22 September
19:00
CAAMA Music live broadcast from festival hub
Saturday, 23 September
17:00
Meet the artists: Join Parrtjima curator Rhoda Roberts OA and meet the talents artists featured in Parrtjima 2017 to learn about their involvement and hear their stories
18:00
Meet the makers: Sit down and meet the makers of Parrtjima including, Parrtjima’s curator Rhoda Roberts AO, Director of AGB Events Anthony Bastic, Parrtjima’s Lighting Designer Richard Neville, NT Major Events Company General Manager Andrew Hopper and two long-standing Arrernte community members, both heavily involved in Parrtjima’s community consultation process, BenedictKngwarraye Stevens and Felicity Hayes
19:00
CAAMA Hour: Live broadcast from the festival hub
20:00
Live music in festival hub: Local musicians bring the sounds and rhythms of Central Australia to Parrtjima
Sunday, 24 September
17:00
Communicating culture through art: Join Grounded artist Greg McAdam as he walks you through his experience of using art to communicate culture and ‘strengthen our youth’
19:30
Tales of the Arrernte night sky: Spend time admiring under the southern cross while listening to sky stories, the star constellations, the milky way and the seasonal changes of the Arrernte country that has inspired the lighting treatment on the MacDonnell Ranges
19:30
Live musical performance by local artist
Monday, 25 September – Friday, 29 September
10:00 – 14:00
Iltja Ntjarra (Many Hands Art Centre) live painting: In a collaborative effort, artists Mervyn Rubuntja, Kathy Inkamala, Reinhold Inkamala and Vanessa Inkamala will paint a Hermannsburg scene from the inside of the 'Hermannsburg Church’ live in the honouring space, throughout the festival. The painting will be displayed in three suspended panels as if viewing country
Friday, 29 September
19:00
CAAMA Hour: Live broadcast from the festival hub
20:00
Acoustic performance by Warren H. Mpetjana Williams
Saturday, 30 September
17:00
Alice Through My Eyes: Join Parrtjima’s curator Rhoda Roberts AO and gain insight into two interesting perspectives of life in Alice Springs, with artist Patricia Ansell Dodds and Actress Trish Moreton Thomas
18:00
Live musical performance by local artist
19:00
CAAMA Hour: Live broadcast from the festival hub
20:00
Acoustic performance by Warren H. Mpetjana Williams followed by a
conversation on how his music relates to country
Sunday, 1 October
17:00
Tradition bearer: Join Arrernte Elders as they share their experiences and pass
over knowledge
18:00
Arrernte trivia night: Join Kumalie Riley, local and respected Arrernte Elder, for a fun evening of trivia about all things Arrernte and more. Test your knowledge, or simply come along to learn more
19:00
Live musical performance by local artist
20:00
Acoustic performance by Warren H. Mpetjana Williams





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