The Colour and Sound of my Totem

Next date: Sunday, 14 August 2022 | 11:30 AM to 02:30 PM

Colour and Sound of my Totem

Imagine yourself roaming through the bush - scurrying across the red earth of the desert – climbing rocks along the shoreline. What native animal would you choose to be?

A totem is a spiritual guide that an Indigenous Australian has to connect them to their Country.

Join local visual artist Frances Loriente, Wiradjuri Soprano Shauntai Batzke, Yvonne Rigney Ngarrindjeri/Kokatha dancer and guest Taungwurrung, Yorta Yorta elder Maxine Briggs to explore your totem through various art forms. Kokatha/Mirning musician Bart Willoughby will also take you on a journey, sharing with you how his totems the Whale and the Eagle connect him to his people from both the desert and sea.

Together you will experiment with instruments to find your own rhythm,  and to explore your chosen totem through various sounds. Taking what you learn further, with your chosen instrument, the will group develop a song based on their totems in preparation for joint performance.

Children are invited to join us for one or more workshops  where they can develop their skills and experiment  through different art forms, learn about indigenous culture sustainable practices and   reconnect with their natural environment,  working toward displaying and performing the work they create to family and friends for a half hour performance. 


Saturday 23 July, 10am to 12.30pm: Workshop 1 - Introduction to Native Animals 

Through drawing, participants explore the idea of totems and discover the importance of animal choices, images, word associations and colour.  Together participants create a collaborative painting of totem animals, showcasing their habitat and each participant adding    an ‘in-print’ of themselves on the collaborative totem.  Participants will also enjoy a basic percussive sound making exploration with different instruments to capture the sound of the of the animals and the bush. The session will also provide an introduction to movement and dance and singing techniques.


Saturday 30 July,  10am to 12.30pm: Workshop 2 - Creation of the Animal Totem 

Participants further explore the creation and development of individual and collaborative work. Exploring music and instruments, participants learn how individual sounds, dance movements and lyric writing are defined  and come together to create a magical collaborative dance, song and music.  Participants also use collage to create a  totem on an instrument ,to be played as part of the performance.


Saturday 6 August, 10am to 12.30pm: Workshop 3 - Rehearsal for the Exhibition Performance

In this workshop, words, singing and instrumentation are practiced and  brought together. Consisting of dance, music, song and a large group sculptural totem made of recycled material to be part of the stage set, participants get to fine tune the wonderful things they have learnt and created through ‘The Colour & Sound of My Totem’ journey.


Sunday 14 August, 11.30am to 3pm: Workshop and Performance/Exhibition

11.30am to 1.30pm (Workshop)

Children will put the finishing touches on art works and prepare to showcase their collection visual art, dance, music and song.

2pm to 3.00pm (Exhibition and Performance)

Family and friends are invited to explore an exhibition of the children’s artworks combined with a performance to celebrate and enjoy the wonderful things they have learnt and created through ‘The Colour & Sound of My Totem’ experience.


Suitable for children 5 to 12 years old. Children 5 to 6 years of age must be accompanied by a parent or adult carer.   Children are asked to bring a healthy snack along and wear comfortable clothing.

Cost: FREE. Limited spaces

Bookings essential:

Enquiries contact: Fran or 0452 112 359

This project was seeded at ArtPlay and is proudly supported by Creative City Hobsons Bay


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  • Saturday, 23 July 2022 | 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM
  • Saturday, 30 July 2022 | 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM
  • Saturday, 06 August 2022 | 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM
  • Sunday, 14 August 2022 | 11:30 AM - 02:30 PM


Woods Street Arts Space, 44 Woods Street, Laverton 3028  View Map

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