Saturday, December 02, 2006

Aboriginal souvenirs at Woomera

During my recent trip, I did hardly any research - most of my time was spent out on the range. However I did manage a few hours in the library looking through the old Gibber Gabber newsletters. I discovered that in the 1960s, the enterprising Jean Macauley set up a business from her home, selling Aboriginal art and souvenirs like miniature weapon sets. There was no indication that they were sourced locally, and the advertisements regularly mentioned consignments of art from Arnhem Land. I have visions of French, German and Italian space scientists, out there for the ELDO programme, browsing in the shop for artefacts to take home, perhaps never aware that Kokatha people were still living in the area.