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Spray painted car on a lake with mountains in the background

Robert Fielding
Holden On

Creation date: 2021-22 Location: Lake Burley Griffin
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Robert Fielding, Western Arrernte and Yankunytjatjara peoples, Holden On, 2021–22, commissioned by the National Gallery of Australia, Kamberri/Canberra for the 4th National Indigenous Art Triennial: Ceremony. Courtesy the artist and Mimili Maku Arts.

Artist Robert Fielding on Holden On

We are part of the land, the Manta, the Wiru, from the Earth to the ocean, from the ocean to the desert we are one.

Ceremony to me now is about identity, it's about story. And how important it is that we embrace one another.

And that this ceremony is not only my ceremony – that the ceremony that I'm sharing with you, that it belonged to somebody else.

And that I am only the creator to tell a story through somebody else's possession. Because I chose to go backwards to move forward.

And for me to be strong on who I am as a person, that I am Anangu, Aboriginal.

By bringing [this work] to Canberra, this new retelling acts as a memorial. A memorial of what is lost, but also a challenge at the front door of our politicians to do better by our people. Through creating an apparition on Lake Burley Griffin, the story of these cars, the people who travelled in them and the memories of all the Aboriginal people who have travelled this land since the beginning of time, is brought to the political heart of Australia. It is a challenge and a respectful honouring of our past, our present and our future — where we will all, as people, travel next?

— Robert Fielding, 2021