Students head to a different territory

In July, 13 resident students travelled on a cultural exchange tour to the Northern Territory.

Following an enriching inaugural trip established last year, in July Trinity College offered 13 resident students a unique opportunity to travel to Darwin and North-East Arnhem Land. The group spent several days in Darwin acclimatising to the weather, visiting local markets and exploring the indigenous art collections at Nomad Art Gallery.

Having briefly explored Darwin, a flight out to Gove landed the group in the hands of Lirrwi Jolngu Tourism. Students were able to experience the culture of indigenous communities first-hand, visiting Nyinyikay and Bukudal.

‘The traditional welcomes we received upon arriving into the communities of Nyinyikay and Bukudal highlighted the pride of the Yolngu people in their heritage, which was very inspiring. I felt privileged to learn about their culture firsthand,’ Bern Toohey (1st year Arts) said.

Much knowledge was shared throughout the week; some practical, involving basket weaving, beading, mud crab hunting and traditional cooking styles; some more difficult to describe, involving song, dance and story, and going further into the complex world of Yolngu language and traditions. By sharing Yolngu culture through tourism, Lirrwi Tourism aim to break down barriers and develop communities.

‘My favourite experience of the trip was listening to the elders at the Bukudal homeland discuss their profound connection and history with the Australian land. I feel so lucky to have met the beautiful people of Nyinyikay and Bukudal; they were so kind to share their way of life with our group,’ Georgina Ridley (1st year Arts) said. 

The group also visited the local art centre in Yirrkala and developed an appreciation for the techniques involved in all of the works, after having tried their hand at weaving and bark painting earlier in the week.

Story by Blake Neilson (2nd year Science)

29 Jul 2014