We're very excited to bring you the story of how our upcoming collaboration with Kalumburu Strong Women’s Centre came about!
Back in 2015 women in Kalumburu expressed their aspirations to engage in enterprise as a suicide prevention strategy to Clare Wood, Mental Health Practioner. The Kimberley region was experiencing tragically high levels of youth suicide and the women in Kalumburu were determined to do something about it. They recognised they needed to help create hopeful futures for their young people, and identified that enterprise could be used to create new opportunities that could engage young people.
Clare Wood and Susannah Wallman reached out to ELP and thus began a partnership to support enterprise exploration and development with community members in Kalumburu.*
One of the enterprises that emerged was the Kalumburu Photography Collective, a group of strong, inspired Aboriginal women who share stories of their country and culture through photography. The women are growing their photography skills as a way to increase employment opportunities in Kalumburu; as well as to archive, share and celebrate their culture and country with wider Australia and the world.
“Doing business can make your life count, make your children proud. I want to live long, I want to learn. I feel excited to hold a camera and take photos. Nothing is going to hold me back. I want to become something”
- Tarisha Mouda, Entrepreneur, Kalumburu
In September 2017, Maggie reached out to Clare Wood to discuss the possibility of engaging the Collective to shoot a ‘look book’ for a Magpie Goose collection.
We received an enthusiastic response!
“Thanks for the invitation and offer of this work, we would love this learning opportunity to both showcase the Kalumburu Photography Collective skills, engage some women as models and work with Magpie Goose. I think this will also be really great for the artists who are interested in screen printing that work at the Women’s Centre to see the clothing range and be involved.” -Clare Wood
The shoot was a success, with the women excelling on the brief with mentoring from professional photographer Freedom Garvey-Warr. You can read more about it in our blog post here. The photoshoot sparked interest at the Strong Women’s Centre: the women expressed a strong desire to see their designs and stories on clothes, so that they could be worn all around the country! ‘Could we feature in a Magpie Goose collection’ they asked? We were determined to make it happen!
"I'd like Kalumburu stories on fabric, I reckon the young women would feel good about it (wearing Kalumburu designs)"
- Maria Fredericks, Kalumburu Photography Collective
Magpie Goose and ELP teamed up with the Strong Women’s Centre to offer a week of workshops to women in Kalumburu in August 2018. This included:
- Introducing the Magpie Goose and brand
- The concept of licensing designs
- Techniques for telling stories on textiles
- The process of exposing a design onto a screen, and screen printing onto fabric
The women loved seeing the designs of other artists featured by Magpie Goose and watching videos of them talking about their designs.
They were inspired to start telling the stories of their community and we were so curious to learn all of the fascinating stories of Kalumburu!!!!
- The Missionaries from Spain that were determined to make crocodile chorizo and set up a croc farm
- The trade of sea cucumbers with the Maccassans for tamarind
- The creation spirit Wandjina that can be found on rock art all over the region
- The brolga that became a much loved community member, even putting in appearances at community discos
These stories are so good, and we are so excited to bring them to you with our Kalumburu x Magpie Goose collection.
It’s coming very soon…..
*You can learn more about enterprise in Kalumburu by visiting Enterprise Partnerships WA.