Graphic Intervention - Kayannie Denigan at Lake Burley Griffin foreshore
The popular DESIGN Canberra graphic intervention project has transformed our city every November. In 2020, the program will be bigger than ever with three new installations across Canberra.
This year, Luritja artist, Kayannie Denigan, will transform the shores of Lake Burley Griffin with her large scale graphic intervention ‘My Country’.
“As I flew over the land of my ancestors I was struck by the beauty of the harsh desert. It was the first time I had been back to Central Australia since I was a child and in hindsight, my last time on a plane for some time. Peering out the plane window, the delineation of the shrubs, grasses, rocks and sand dunes was stark and stunning.
Upon returning home I set out to incorporate these separate elements in my art, inspired by my Nanna’s country in Central Australia and my upbringing on Cape York. Through Canberra’s lockdown and ‘new normal’ I was occupied by the delineation of these elements in my work on canvas and in digital formats. I was determined to find a way to show these elements are connected—all part Australia’s beauty—but also separate, beautiful elements on their own.
This piece brings the individual beauty of scrub, water bodies, boulders and hills across my country to my new home in Canberra.”
This graphic intervention will be presented on Ngunnawal Country in front of the new CCAS Gallery in the Commonwealth Place Precinct.
Kayannie (pronounced Kai-arnie) Denigan is a Luritja artist. She grew up in the remote Cape York community of Hope Vale and has strong connections the community and its peoples. She is recognised as part of the Bagarrmuguwarra and Kuku Yalanji nations and as a Traditional Owner of that country. Kayannie has connections to Iltjitjari and Unturu in Central Australia through her grandmother and great-grandmother respectively and to Buru, Starke and Yuku Budhuwigu on Cape York, through her step-father’s family.
Kayannie’s works predominantly in acrylic on canvas and her painting style was passed down to her from her grandmothers and utilises the iconic dots of Central Desert art. Her art combines the desert way with the colours and stories of the Bagarrmuguwarra and Kuku Yalanji people of Far North Queensland. She is able to merge the contrasting styles of her heritage and upbringing to create her own unique style. Kayannie has also worked in copper, brass and silver to create contemporary jewellery and items that reflect and enhance her practice.