Coomaditchie: The Art of Place

Experience community life by the ocean through the works of First Nations artists in Coomaditchie: The Art of Place at the Museum of Sydney. These loving and lyrical artworks, which include paintings, ceramics and screen-prints, speak of life in and around the settlement of Coomaditchie, its history, ecology and local Dreaming stories.

The exhibition celebrates the 30th anniversary of the founding of the Coomaditchie United Aboriginal Corporation in 1993. The corporation provides support and services to the broader community and to the people of the Coomaditchie settlement, located at Coomaditchie Lagoon in the city of Wollongong, the centre of the Illawarra region of NSW. Also on display are original historical documents and a short film that reveal the social and political narrative of the founding of the current Coomaditchie settlement, which followed a long campaign for housing for local Aboriginal people.

Today, the work of the Coomaditchie artists can be found all over the Illawarra – in community spaces, buildings, landscapes, streets and galleries. A selection of photographs shows the depth and the beauty of their contributions to the public art landscape. This timely exhibition offers a glimpse into the political, social and artistic activities of a very special place.

School holiday activities: During the school holidays, visit the Museum of Sydney for a range of thought provoking and fun drop-in activities. Kids can try their hand at badge-making inspired by the tireless campaigning of Coomaditchie residents for access to housing or create their own postcard that focuses on the spiritual connection First Nation’s people have to the land.

FREE, no bookings required. Materials supplied, suitable for all ages.

Activities will run every day* 13-28 April, 10am-2pm.

*subject to staff availability

Exhibition events

The first three decades (decade 3), Coomaditchie artists and community members, 2022, acrylic on unstretched canvas, 302cm x 213.5 cm. 
Coomaditchie United Aboriginal Corporation
25 May, 11.30am

Coomaditchie: The Art Of Place Curator Talk

Join First Nations Curator Tess Allas for a tour of the thought-provoking exhibition Coomaditchie: The Art of Place

Untitled, Allison Day, 2006. Photo © Bernie Fisher, 2022. Artwork © the artist
9–10 July, 11am & 2pm

Art of Place: Poetry Workshop with Lucy Norton

You are invited to write about your 'Art of Place' at a Poetry Workshop with Lucy Norton

Between the mountains and the sea, Lorraine Brown and Narelle Thomas, 2008. Photo © Bernie Fisher, 2022. Artworks © the artists
2 May, 11.30am

Coomaditchie Artists in Conversation

Hear from senior Coomaditchie artists in conversation with First Nations Curator Tess Allas

Coomaditchie: The Art of Place is based on the exhibition commissioned by Wollongong Art Gallery in 2023.

Corner Phillip and Bridge streets, Sydney NSW 2000. Phone +61 2 9251 5988

Museum of Sydney

Corner Phillip and Bridge streets, Sydney NSW 2000. Phone +61 2 9251 5988
  • Cafe
  • Wheelchair accessible
Plan your visit

  • 30 March – 25 August 2024


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