Curated by Sara Lindsay, 'Constellation: forming the flag' includes new textile and fibre artworks by Donna Blackall, Amanda Ho, Sara Lindsay, David Pearce and Gosia Wlodarczak in response to the formal and material qualities of the Flag of the Southern Cross, also known as the Eureka Flag. The Eureka Flag is a compelling and contested part of the history of the 1854 Eureka Stockade. While it remains one of Australia's most significant textile treasures, speculation continues about who made and designed the flag, which it originally symbolised, and what it has since come to represent.
In making new work in response to the flag, the participating artists have limited their engagement with the flag's heavy cultural, political, and historical baggage, instead focussing on its formal and material qualities. Working in conceptually different ways across diverse cultural contexts, the artists share an engagement with the slow, incremental, and intimate process of making that is unique to textile and fibre traditions. They share a common interest in exploring the tension between binaries of the individual versus the collective, thereby creating a tension between the private process of making and dialogue with the Eureka Flag - an object of enormous public stature that resides deep in Australia's collective memory.
Image: Sara Lindsay, 'Patched with Gold (the miner's shirt)' 2022, Cotton and silk, 85 x 75 cm