In a powerful tribute to Indigenous culture and unity, the Suncorp Super Netball League's highly anticipated First Nations Round commenced last Saturday. The league proudly showcases the exquisite artwork of Krystal Dallinger, a talented Gamilaroi woman, throughout this momentous occasion. Ms. Dallinger's captivating piece, titled 'Gather as One,' will be prominently displayed on a custom match ball, umpire uniforms, and at the center circle of the court.
Sharing a story of togetherness, Ms Dallinger said the design represents the shared love of netball held by all those involved in the game regardless of their background.
"The story behind the design is that we all come together and share the same love for netball no matter our background or where we came from," Ms Dallinger said.
Ms Dallinger's design features an emu, goanna and kangaroo, a recognition of Indigenous leaders past, present and emerging.
"The positioning of the animals around the circle is designed to represent the Acknowledgement to Country which begins this journey," she said.
"It is said in many ways and languages, but with every Acknowledgement we are paying respect to our Elders past, present and emerging."
Ms Dallinger said Gather as One utilises both traditional and contemporary artistic techniques by combining modern colours with culturally-inspired designs that represent her ancestors and all Indigenous peoples.
"While I used earth colours, commonly seen in ochre paintings, I also included modern bright colours. This offered a nod to the fact we're constantly dipping our toes into the modern art scene which presents a wide array of colours, stories and journeys," Ms Dallinger said.
"I added a handprint in the centre of the artwork like how it was traditionally put on the walls of caves and on rocks as a way to say, 'I was here'. I wanted to add a personal touch and used my own hand to leave my print in the world like our Elders did."
Ms Dallinger's artwork also reflects the 2023 Reconciliation Week theme of Be a Voice for Generations, encouraging all Australians to be a voice for reconciliation in tangible ways in their everyday lives.
All eight Super Netball teams will acknowledge their club's traditional lands by wearing uniforms designed by Indigenous artists throughout First Nations Round.
Suncorp Super Netball First Nations Round and National Reconciliation Week will be held simultaneously from May 27 to June 3.
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Photo Courtesy National Indigenous Times
Courtesy National Indigenous Times