Ngurra is the word for Country in Darug Dalang-Language. Whilst on my father's Country I got to retrace the steps of my family, walked taking in the beauty of the area, the smell of the Eucalyptus and sweet honey tones from the Blooms surrounding me and collecting from the ground up - plants important to our people. Surrounded by; Burra Blue skies, Yarra Trees, Balga Mountains, Badu Water, Dhurabang River, Giba Rocks, Durawayi Grass and a Guwiang Fire. The crossover between Winter and Spring with its new growth symbolic of my own personal growth and reconnection to the area. After a long time being off-Country.
My intention was to capture this on my fabric, these iconic plants and the colour change to all things Green from the grey tones produced in this area from my last visit in the heart of a Sydney winter. To smell the dye over a fire and keep some Charcoal, the scent of Eucalyptus embedded within it. To have these markings naturally produced and finally being able to take a piece of the Ngurra with me to my place of Residence. The equivalent of taking with me a handful of dust Bimal. Warrigal Greens a source of food. Country Speaks to me in this fabric, it speaks to us all if we Listen. Ngurra.
Kylie Colemane is a Darug and Wiradjuri, Mornington Peninsula based Artist living on Bunurong/Boon Wurrung lands, mainly works with Native/Indigenous Plants. Her pieces are hand dyed with plants, Charcoal, Ochre and plant based Pigments and Paints-collected from Nature, Fire remnants featuring the scent of Country.
A principle theme in her work is exploring the ongoing Connection to Country through Plant Nostalgia featuring Childhood plants from Wiradjuri Country where she grew up and visits to Darug Country, with the use of Colour, memories of people, place and time. Gathered by hand just as our Old People did, collecting from the Ground Cover, sitting around a Fire where they Weaved, Baked, told their stories. Often she can be found by a fire pit at home using her Dye Pots. The smell of Eucalyptus emanating.
Her Fabrics tell a story of the Seasons with the colours changing throughout the year, this Storytelling is a way of reclaiming traditions and practices that are centuries old. Educating self and others about the Plants of these Lands. The Weather and Soil changes the Landscape and effect the end result. Healthy Country means Healthy People.
As a Nature Based Therapist, Native Plant and Bushfoods Educator, Art via Botanical Illustrations and Food/cooking are utilised to connect people to Nature via her small business "Your Green Prescription".
With Sustainability and Climate Change ever present dyeing Clothing Naturally without the use of Chemicals and pollutants from fashion entering Water systems is her goal.
Currently Kylie is co-author in creating a book which will include Native Plants, Food and Mindfulness due to be launched late 2024. With a small boutique hand dyed range of clothing in production; "The Vera Pauline Collection" named after her two grandmothers using their favourite flowers fused with Ruby Satlbush Berries.
Continues to Educate and Teach these skills to Schools, Universities and Community groups. Following in the footsteps of her father and grandmother who took her out into the Bush regularly from a young age to learn about the Plants, Animals, water and seasons.
"This piece has the Plants and smell of my Country encased within. Thank you for viewing it."