Reflections of My Country

Day at the River by Duncan Smith
Day at the River (detail) by Duncan Smith.

Reflections of My Country

Duncan Smith

Generator Gallery

9 July – 15 August 2021
Opening 6pm Friday 9 July

“My Country gives me inspiration to paint; also my family and community.”

Duncan Smith OAM presents an exploration of Wiradjuri Country, using traditional ochre and acrylic paints on board. His works reflect rivers, waterholes, meeting places, animals, trees, grinding stones, artifacts, scar tree patterns and land patterns. Before painting, Wiradjuri people travel throughout their Country to collect ochre. After gathering the ochre, they grind it to a fine powder with a grinding stone, then add water and a binding agent, such as wood glue, to help it stick to the surface it is being applied to. Ochre colours are traditionally white, red, yellow and brown, and paint brushes and sticks are used to paint dots. The exhibition includes single works as well as sets of three, with every painting different to each other.

About the artist

Duncan Smith OAM was born in Wiradjuri Country, Wellington NSW. Duncan spent his younger years learning his culture and painting with his Elders and members of his family. He spent 20 years growing up in Wellington before moving to Canberra. Elders in Duncan’s community took him hunting and gathering, and taught him cultural dances.  He has a strong family connection with his mother, who taught him about art. He has now made his own connection, painting with acrylic paint and ochre. Duncan’s paintings reflect his connection to the land. He runs a very successful business in teaching his culture through arts and dancing, and is very well respected in Canberra and NSW. Duncan’s art work can been seen throughout Canberra and NSW, with pieces in Parliament House, the National Museum of Australia, embassies and various schools.