The Karrabing Film Collective is a grassroots Indigenous based media group consisting of over twenty members. They approach filmmaking as a mode of self-organisation and a means of investigating contemporary social conditions of inequality. Film making provides a means of self-organization and social analysis for the Karrabing and their films represent their lives, create bonds with their land, and intervene in global images of Indigeneity. Screenings and publications allow the Karrabing to develop a local artistic languages and allow audiences to understand new forms of collective Indigenous agency.
This selection of films by The Karrabing Film Collective has been selected by the artist Louis Henderson as part of his film series Echoes, that contemplates the invited people and films that have played a considerable part in the sculpting of Henderson’s new commission and exhibition Overtures opening in our main gallery on Fri 20 Apr until Sun 10 Jun 2018.
Mermaids, Mirror Worlds (2018)
In the near present fictional world Europeans can no longer survive for long periods outdoors in a land and seascape poisoned by capitalism, but Indigenous people seem able to. A young Indigenous man, Aiden, taken away when he was just a baby to be a part of a medical experiment to save the white race, is released into the world of his family. In the nonfictional world wild claims are made about the healthy, safe and protective practices of multinational capitalization of nature. As viewers travel with Aiden, his father and brother across these landscapes they confront two possible futures and pasts.
Night Time Go (2017)
On September 19, 1943, a group of Karrabing ancestors escaped from a war internment camp and walked over 300 kilometers back to their coastal homelands in Northern Australia. Night Time Go is an exploration of the settler state’s attempt to remove Indigenous people from their lands during the Second World War using truck, train, and rifle and the refusal of the Karrabing ancestors to be detained. The film begins by hewing closely to the actual historical details of this ancestral journey but slowly turns to an alternative history in which the group inspires a general Indigenous insurrection driving out settlers from the Top End of Australia. Mixing drama and humor, history and satire, Night Time Go pushes subaltern history beyond the bounds of settler propriety.
Wutharr, Saltwater Dreams (2016)
Across a series of increasingly surreal flashbacks, an extended indigenous family argues about what caused their boat’s motor to break down and leave them stranded out bush. As they consider the roles played in the incident by the ancestral present, the regulatory state and the Christian faith, Wutharr, Saltwater Dreams explores the multiple demands and inescapable vortexes of contemporary indigenous life.