EDITOR | Visual Arts Hub
a Bit na Ta: The Story of the Gunantuna at the Bunjilaka Aboriginal Cultural Centre, Melbourne Museum, until- 4 February 2018; ticketed
MELBOURNE - Although Papua New Guinea is Australia’s nearest neighbour geographically, it has traditionally been held at a cultural distance.
Shared projects are rare and relatively few Australians have experienced the cultures of this vibrant nation.
Museums Victoria is challenging that distance through the multimedia installation and exhibition, a Bit na Ta: The Story of the Gunantuna, a collaborative project re-imagining PNG through language, colour and symbolic imagery.
a Bit na Ta ('the source of the sea') incorporates video footage, photographic works and collection objects, and celebrates the resilience of the Tolai people of East New Britain, who have survived the disruptions of shifting colonial powers, war, volcanic eruptions and independence struggles.
The work is the outcome of a 30-year friendship between internationally renowned Tolai singer George Telek and Aria-winning musician and composer David Bridie.