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Regional Arts Fund Project | Arts Northern Rivers: Bundjalung and Kunwinjku Women’s Cultural Exchange

A unique cultural exchange and collaborative arts project between the Wake Up Time Women, a NSW Northern Rivers Bundjalung women’s textile-arts collective based in Casino and a group of Kunwinjku women textile artists, from Injalak Arts, Oenpelli, Northern Territory will be happening in late March.

With both groups specialising in fabric textiles including printing, dyeing and fibre and weaving, this project will support the women to not only develop and exchange traditions, skills and techniques, but also to create strong and lasting reciprocal relationships of cultural significance to each group.

The creation of fibre objects has a long history in Arnhem Land. Woven dilly bags, ceremonial headdresses and string bags appear amongst the oldest rock paintings in the area, dating from over 20,000 years ago. Works of fibre craft were important for food gathering, food preparation and ceremonial purposes. The Kunwinjku women of Injalak Arts continue to develop this tradition while experimenting with contemporary artistic innovations.

The Wake Up Time Bundjalung women’s group has been meeting for over a decade. Initially the group came together out of a need to support each other during difficult times, however, since then, the group has gone on to develop both a strong collective artistic textile knowledge, participating in high profile events such as the first Australian Indigenous Fashion Week, and re-claiming traditional techniques used by their ancestors.


Kylie Caldwell, Co-ordinator for the Casino Wake Up Time group, says;Image

“We are very excited about the cultural exchange with the Kunwinjku women, the aunties are very impressed with their quality of work and look forward to learning from the women. Injalak artists are renowned for their beautiful cultural prints and woven basketry.  I hope this cultural exchange will be the beginning of a new relationship where both groups share, inspire and support each other’s creative and cultural practises.”



At the completion of the two week cultural exchange program the Bundjalung and Kunwinjku women will open the doors to offer a workshop for interested women both indigenous and non-indigenous. These workshops offer a unique opportunity for participants to engage and meet with both Bundjalung and Kunwinjku women, to share their culture and wisdom and learn the respective techniques of each group.

Saturday 1 April & Sunday 2 April
Clunes Old School Site, 17 Walker Street, Clunes
10am – 4pm
$257.02 (cost includes materials, native from both regions)
Note: This workshop is open to women only
Book here

For more information call (02) 6628 8120 or email