Calling the shots: Aboriginal photographies

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Historically, photographs of Indigenous Australians were often produced under unequal and exploitative circumstances. Today, however, such images represent a rich cultural heritage for descendants who can use this rich archive to explore Aboriginal history, to identify relatives, and to reclaim culture. In Aboriginal photographies contributors investigate the Indigenous significance of engaging with images from each of the former colonies. The result is a fresh perspective on Australia’s past, and on present-day Indigenous identities.

Rather than telling us what ‘the white photographer saw’, Aboriginal photographies focuses upon the interactions between photographer and Indigenous people and the living meanings the photos have today.

Jane Lydon (editor) is an ARC Future Fellow at the University of Western Australia. Her most recent publication is The flash of recognition. Contributors include Julie Gough, Jane Lydon, Sari Braithwaite, Shauna Bostock-Smith, Lawrence Bamblett, Michael Aird, Karen Hughes and Aunty Ellen Trevorrow, Donna Oxenham, Laurie Baymarrwangga and Bentley James.

Edited by Jane Lydon


This collection brings us the richness of rarely seen images and rarely heard Indigenous Australian perspectives on photography that engages their past, present, and future with great insight and sensitivity. 

- Professor Faye Ginsburg, New York University, Director, Center for Media, Culture and History

This book allows us to unpack, re-piece and juxtapose divergent photographic stories about how and why photographs of Aboriginal people were made and kept. Read on and see, feel and share the unravelling…there has been change in the air, and it just got crisper. 

- Brook Andrew, Aboriginal artist.


Availability: April 2014 RRP $39.95 incl. GST

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Last reviewed: 18 Apr 2016