November 13 - 19, 2022: Issue 562


Connecting to Country – Barley Ki Giballee: You and Me Come Together - Avalon 100 

Another great Sally Mayman collaboration realised

Photo: Sally Mayman

Barley Ki Giballee: You and Me Come Together, Collaborating Connecting and Caring For Country: Open November 19 To 20 Saturday and Sunday 10 - 4pm

Sally Mayman (Turtle Pictures), continues to enjoy an enduring passion for photography, working as an artist, commercial photographer and educator. Sally exhibits regularly, her personal work exploring the emotional, spiritual and physical connections we have with the natural world and how these are intimately woven with our sense of belonging. 

Through workshops Sally loves sharing her knowledge and skills with students throughout Australia, she is the Artist in Residence at Barrenjoey High School and Youth Off The Streets and currently mentors teenagers living with anxiety and depression. 

At the launch earlier this year of one of the Avalon 100 Art Exhibitions Sally outlined a project she would be undertaking to engage local youngsters with country, with the help of indigenous peoples. 

In Winter 2022, running into Sally at South Avalon Beach headland, the word was the project was advancing. And now, next weekend, November 19th-20th, at Avalon Beach Surf Club the community is invited to a very special exhibition as a result of this project.

To commemorate the Avalon Beach Centenary please join in celebrating a collaborative exhibition capturing students connections to country. The project, inspired and directed by Sally Mayman, has culminated in an exhibition reflective of a series of workshops with local Indigenous artists Corey Kirk and Aleta Wassell, and Barrenjoey High School visual arts teacher Sandy Chockman. 

Students from Avalon Primary and Barrenjoey High schools have experienced their immediate environment and been challenged to extend their knowledge of Avalon’s history, culture, flora and fauna, emphasising First Nations knowledge of place. 

The intention of the project is to provoke deeper levels of belonging and well-being. Through enhanced awareness and connection, it is hoped this project will continue to inspire students to share with others, building a stronger sense of the their important role in caring for country and building a healthy connected community. 

This week Pittwater Online News spoke to Sally about the project.

What kind of works will be on display at the Barley Ki Giballee: You And Me Come Together, Collaborating Connecting and Caring For Country Exhibition?

It’s photographic based but not just photographs. We’ve been inspired by working with two indigenous Artists and have been working to create works that represent the students’ connections to their local environment. So we decided to use an old photographic process called the cyanotype process and we’ve made 2 ½ metre long material banners. We’ve made 40 of these. So it’s a bit like a forest you walk through, but it’s also inspired by the coast as well.

So that part is photographic based but they’re not photographs as such.

They’re really beautiful. The students have done outstanding work.

Who are the two indigenous Artists involved in the project – and what are the different genres?

Corey Kirk and Aleta Wassell. 

Corey is a girl who has grown up here and is wonderfully connected to this area. Her creativity really comes through music. She was in the Sydney City Children’s Choir and sang all around the world doing that Qantas advertisement. Corey is also a very beautiful visual Artist as well and has been walking a lot with us on country, just taking the kids along the creek, down to the beach, through the sand dunes and explaining what all the medicinal properties of different plants are and what their uses would have been for so many things. The kids have really enjoyed this and had never come across much of this knowledge. It has really opened their eyes as to what’s around them.

So, for instance, when they go down to the beach they can use soapy wattle and give themselves a good clean – if they cut themselves they could use pigface on their cuts; just lots of little things so that they’ve suddenly gone ‘oh wow’. People knew a lot and that’s getting carried forward.

Corey and Avalon Primary school students working with paperbark

Aleta specialises more in mixing vocals and soundtracks. So we’ve done a recording of things and we’ve made a film using the kids visuals and recordings – so that will be on display as well.

The other aspect of the project we’ve done is talk a lot about totems and the responsibilities of what having a totem involves.

The kids learnt a lot about the indigenous system of totems and we asked them to all think about, and ask their parents, what their totem would be. So they have all chosen a totem and made these beautiful line drawings onto pavers. We’re going to bring those into the surf club for the exhibition but then they’re going to end up in a yarning and healing circle in the school.

What are a few examples of the totems they have chosen?

Dolphins – and being identified with dolphins. Some have chosen parrots, hammerhead sharks, whales, a stingray – which is also a totem for this area.

The whole system of totems is quite complex. You may have four totems, which may be your mob totem but also you can have your family totems and your personal totem. So there are lots of layers of totems. 

The wonderful thing about having a totem is it’s your responsibility to educate people around that totem. For instance, say my totem was an emu and you came along at one stage and took an emu egg at the wrong time of the year. I would actually be punished because I hadn’t taught you well enough that you did not understand that could not take that egg at that stage because it’s unsustainable. 

This brings in this wonderful idea of looking after country and sharing knowledge and educating each other on how to look after country. So this has been a real eye-opener to the kids as well.

Corey and BHS students working on their totem pavers

Thanks Sally – sounds like a great exhibition! When does it open?

Uncle Neil Evers will be welcoming us with a smoking ceremony on the lawn before moving upstairs into the surf club. The Exhibition Opening happens Saturday 19th November 5.30pm at Avalon Beach Surf Life Saving Club.

Entry is by donation, with profits going to Bush to Bowl.

A special thank you to Corey for your generous warm-hearted enthusiasm in sharing your knowledge as we walked together on country.

With many thanks to Northern Beaches Council, Avalon Beach Surf Life Saving Club, Penguin Creative, Flower Power, Officeworks and Fox Wardrobes for their support in providing funding and materials. 

About Bush to Bowl
Bush to Bowl aims to create spaces where families and community members can engage with Australia’s native plants and traditional Aboriginal knowledge and culture.
Bush to bowl is our way of giving back to Culture and to Country as it gives so much to us on a daily basis. We believe strongly about protecting both these spaces now and in the future. 
Contact us:
Address: 18 Myoora Rd Terrey Hills
More at: 

Pittwater Online News acknowledges the traditional custodians of this land that we live, work and walk on. We commit to continue their story and connection to Country - land and water. Our deepest respects to all Elders past, present and emerging.

Photos this page, apart from one of Sally herself, by Sally Mayman, Turtle Pictures

Sally Mayman - Winter 2022 at South Av.

Avalon Beach Centenary Events + References

  1. Avalon Beach Culture Collective Inc + Avalon Beach Centenary Events 
  2. Avalon Beach 100th – Centenary Celebrations - Centenary Art Exhibition Opening Night
  3. A Celebration Of Avalon Beach’s Uniqueness – Past, Present and Future by Jayne Denshire
  4. Avalon 100 - Avalon Centenary Celebrations Hosts Great Events This March: Avalon Sailing Club's  'Sail Of The Century' + Radio Northern Beaches Launches 'The Avalon Story' Series
  5. Avalon Beach 100 - Ray Henman's 100 Years Centenary Film Of The Family Of Arthur Jabez Small Talk On Their Grandfather + Extra A J Small Notes
  6. Avalon Beach Centenary Nature Of Avalon and Our Indigenous Culture Celebration At Avalon Art Gallery and Dunbar Park
  7. Pittwater's Torpedo Wharf - 2022
  8. Framing Avalon Beach: Avalon 100 - Take Yourself On A Walking Tour Of The Then & Now Of Avalon: Launches April 11th
  9. Avalon Beach “Luminaries” Have Climate Change On Their Mind: The Avalon Story Interviews With Professor Mark Howden - Nada Herman
  10. The Avalon Story: Geoff Searl OAM
  11. Avalon Community Library: Demountables, Debt Collecting, and Dedication 
  12. Herfort's Chemist: How Ice-Cream Helped A Canny Pharmacist Stay The Distance The Avalon Story - Terry Herfort
  13. From Italy To Avalon Beach, With Love
  14. Avalon Beach Historical Society’s 10th Great Historic Photographic Exhibition
  15. Avalon Beach Historical Society's 10th Great Historic Photograph Exhibition Opening
  16. Avalon Beach Village Shops: Some History  
  17. If You Are Looking For Aussie Surfing History, Look No Further Than North Avalon: John Haymes - On The Avalon Story
  18. Avalon Beach in 1970-71 - more great photos shared by Gary Clist  
  19. Avalon's Village Green: Avalon Park Becomes Dunbar Park - Some History + Toongari Reserve and Catalpa Reserve 
  20. Pittwater Summer Houses: Gunjulla, Avalon Beach-Clareville
  21. Avalon Beach Sand Dunes: Some History
  22. Grand Old Tree Of Angophora Reserve Falls Back To The Earth  

Support Materials - Avalon Beach Centenary 

  1. Pittwater Roads II: Where The Streets Have Your Name - Avalon Beach
  2. Pittwater Roads II: Where The Streets Have Your Name - Clareville
  3. Avalon Beach Surf Life Saving Club - The First Clubhouse
  4. Avalon Beach Surf Life Saving Club - The Second and Third Clubhouses
  5. Avalon Beach Golf Links - Pittwater Fields of Dreams II
  6. Daniel Gordon Soutar's Influence On Local Golf Courses: Some History Notes
  7. Avalon Camping Ground
  8. Avalon Beach Reserve Heritage Marker For Old Kiosk Installed
  9. Angophora Reserve
  10. Avalon Theatre - Ron Turton Profile
  11. Motor Car Tours To And In Pittwater Show Us The Way This Place Once Was 
  12. Avalon Beach Public School: Some History For A 70th Birthday
  13. Photographers Of Early Pittwater: David 'Rex' Hazlewood +  Photographers Of Early Pittwater: David 'Rex' Hazlewood
  14. Archpriest John Joseph Therry
  15. John Collins of Avalon - Pittwater Patriarchs Series I
  16. Maria Louisa Therry - Pittwater Matriarchs Series I
  17. Careel Bay Steamer Wharf And Boatshed
  18. The Mulhalls Of Broken Bay And Barrenjoey - Australian Champions
  19. Light Keepers of Barrenjoey Lightstation
  20. Captain Francis Hixson
  21. The Collaroy Paddle Steamer: New Ephemera Added To Public Accessible Records - Her Connections To Pittwater
  22. Albert Thomas Black
  23. John Black 
  24. Pittwater Reserves, The Green Ways: Clareville Wharf and Taylor's Point Jetty
  25. Early Pittwater Paddlers, Oarsmen, Rowers And Scullers: The Green Family
  26. Early Pittwater Paddlers, Oarsmen, Rowers And Scullers: The Fox Family
  27. Early Pittwater Paddlers, Oarsmen, Rowers And Scullers: The Paddon Family Of Clareville (Or Clairville)
  28. Hy-Brasil: Avalon Beach - Pittwater's Summer Houses
  29. Pittwater's Torpedo Wharf and Range
  30. The Roads and Tracks Of Yesterday: How The Avalon Beach Subdivisions Changed The Green Valley Tracks
  31. Roads In Pittwater: The Barrenjoey Road
  32. Photos Of Avalon Beach And Surrounds From 1968 And 1970 - Taken By Gary Clist 
  33. The Roads And Tracks Of Yesterday: How The Avalon Beach Subdivisions Changed The Green Valley Tracks
  34. Avalon Preservation Association - Profile
  35. This is Avalon - Winter Solstice Festival - Sunday 21st of June 2015
  36. Winter Solstice Festival Warms Avalon’s Heart by Jayne Denshire
  37.  Avalon Art Carnival: THE GAME - November 2015
  38. Avalon Beach Historical Society
  39. Avalon Preservation Association