Squatters & Savages

Peter Waples-Crowe and Megan Evans

Squatters & Savages
Site Number: 1
Site Location: Turnley's Roller Door, 9 Gertrude st
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This work is the product of a two year long journey that Peter and Megan engaged in which included road trips to both Peter’s traditional lands and Megan’s families ancestral beginnings in Australia. On learning from Peter’s Uncle about a story of early colonists removing a cave painting with a wire brush from a sacred site, they decided to re-enact this. Megan played the board game Squatter as a child in place of monopoly. This was re-enacted at a restored colonial cottage in Tumburrumba with Peter wearing a possum skin cloak and Megan dressed in a replica of her Great Grandmothers Victorian dress. This sometimes playful approach brings together, in a collaboration, both the hard truths of either side of the frontier as well as the attempt to communicate across the bitter divide.

This site is supported by Epson equipment: EB-L1505UNL

Peter Waples-Crowe and Megan Evans

Peter is  Ngarigo and his work reflected on the representation of Aboriginal people in popular culture.

Megan Evans is of Scottish, Irish Welsh heritage, born on Wurundjerri land. Her work examined the role of her ancestors in the brutal history of this country.

Peter was invited to produce a body of work in response to the galleries colonial print collection. Peter invited Artist Megan Evans to join him in this exhibition to provide a non-Aboriginal perspective.

The work produced takes a contemporary view of colonial occupation from either side of the frontier, influenced by the gross stereotyped images produced by the colonial mind that consist of the biggest collection of colonial prints in Australia.

Peter’s ancestors belonged to the land near where Megan’s Great Grandfather Patrick John Kelly first occupied land as a coloniser in 1872.

The concept of collapsed histories is the context that defines the work, enabling the artists to draw a direct lineage from the colonial era to contemporary times, to better understand the stereotypes created by the European gaze.

This project is supported by: