Aboriginal Programs

Water Yarns

19 July – 23 September 2001

Water Yarns was the first Aboriginal exhibition to be staged in the new gallery space and was developed after consultation with the gallery’s ARG and the local Aboriginal community. Thematically based on local ‘water place’ stories as told by Elders during a series of recorded workshops connected to the Awabakal Dreaming project, it celebrated the culture of the traditional owners of the land, the Awabakal people.

The selected artworks presented a wide range of styles through which each Hunter-based artist articulated their response to these stories as well as their own experiences and connections. The opening was a celebration of culture with performances by local dancers.


  • Richard Campbell
  • Steve Duke
  • Carole Hartwig
  • Cherie McLaren (Johnson)
  • Raymond Smith

A gallery project curated by emerging curator Bev Whyte with Diana Robson, supported by Museums and Galleries NSW

Photo: Dancers and crowd at the opening of Water Yarns

Dancers and crowd at the opening of Water Yarns