Allara & Coree Thorpe AKA Lucid Juncture
Diyalana, translating to silver wattle in Yorta Yorta, is a collaborative project between musician and composer Allara, and visual artist Coree Thorpe. It is presented in 4 new visual artworks, 4 new compositions and 4 new film clips. It’s a project that explores ourselves, our Yorta Yorta culture and our hopes for the future.
We encourage you to discover your own interpretation or feelings about the ideas expressed in the works. All the music is instrumental, except for in ‘ngatha nhawa-l nanyirr’ when Allara sings “I’m looking for my digging-stick”. Using the power of composition, the music shares an album length journey alongside time-lapse videos of Coree creating the artworks.
Do your own research, think critically and find out more about the stories we are sharing. We do not accept ignorance, therefore we hope that this project inspires you to learn about the Country where you live, and the people that came before you.
Like the versatile plant itself, diyalana is a collaboration between yamak (cousins), sharing different aspects of our kinship, culture and history; we hope it touches you like it has us.
diyalana translating to silver wattle in Yorta Yorta, celebrates our intimate connection with our homelands. A grinding stone encompasses the music, connecting us spherically; up, down, backwards and forwards in time. An integral part of our everyday lifestyles, diyalana was like the oldest smartphone ever, versatile to no end but without the stress of a flat battery! The plant is still used for medicine, sweet drinks and baking, its wood for crafting tools and weapons, and the flowers to honour those we have lost. While grieving the depth of loss colonisation has inflicted, diyalana offers a magnitude of hope. It signifies a way to move forward connecting old traditions to the present.
ngatha nhawa-l nanyirr
ngatha nhawa-l nanyirr, meaning ‘I’m looking for my yam-stick’ tells a parallel of two stories. The first is The Cutting, an old Yorta Yorta Story about our Ancestors response to a shift in the tectonic plates at Cadell’s Fault line which occurred not far from Barmah, around 35,000 years ago. The shift changed the direction of the Dhungala (big water, also known as the Murray River), and threatened all life in the area. In response many clan groups came together and used their digging sticks to return the flow to its correct direction. The second story depicts the arrival of Europeans. This work represents these parallels as one, using 38 digging sticks, alarming sound effects and fierce visuals.
This work is inspired by the breast plates that Older Aboriginal men were forced to wear on Government Missions. Queen plates also existed, but were not as prominent due to the toxic patriarchal nature of most Western systems. Exploring the complexity that Breast Plates have brought to Aboriginal people, the work specifically draws on our direct connection to King Billy of Maloga, from Maloga Mission which both our families come from. Most of the time the replacement of traditional Aboriginal names to ‘King Billy, etc.’ was an attempt to eliminate our identity and force us into their bureaucratic systems.
Birthing the Resistance
Birthing the Resistance is an honouring to the strength, resilience, fight and straight up deadiness of the many Yorta Yorta mob that make up our huge yakapna (family). Today our kinship system has become extremely complex as a result of colonisation, but always has and always will run deep into the roots of Yorta Yorta Country. This work shares the ancient Cubby Tree on the banks of the Dhungala, overlayed with a portrait depicting the great Yorta Yorta matriarch old Granny Kitty Cooper/Atkinson.
Listen to the album
See the artwork
diyalana is on show in Carson Place, Melbourne. It’s off Lt Collins St and opposite Sensory Lab.