THE BLAK INFINITE: Rising Festival

Michael Cook

1 - 16 Jun 2024

Presented with Fed Square
Tony Albert, Richard Bell, Michael Cook, Kait James, Tarryn Love, Ellen Van Neerven, Josh Muir

Fed Square becomes a constellation of art and stories that share First Peoples futures, connections to the cosmos, and political discourse.
The Blak Infinite is a site for sharing First Peoples connections to the cosmos, political constellations and futures.
Across Fed Square, experience large-scale installations, new commissions and conversations by leading First Nations artists and writers. Journey through sovereign political and environmental movements, perceptions of belonging and alienation, and the stories in the stars.
Anchoring The Blak Infinite is Richard Bell’s (Kamilaroi, Kooma, Jiman and Gurang Gurang) installation EMBASSY—inspired by the original Aboriginal Tent Embassy, pitched on the grounds of Canberra’s Parliament House in 1972. Bell’s installation continues the politically driven work of First Peoples, featuring daily film screenings and a program of talks with activists, writers and artists every Saturday of the festival.
Immersive nighttime projections by Tarryn Love (Gunditjmara Keerray Woorroong) will light up each evening in the square, sharing stories of Sky Country and the cosmos, and transporting you into celestial knowledge. Tony Albert’s (Girramay, Yidinyji and Kuku Yalanji) large-scale artwork BEAM ME UP The Art of Abduction immerses us in themes of alienation, belonging, and place through colourful installations and a children’s program.
Artworks and texts across the site explore the infinite possibility of First Peoples futures. The big screen features speculative fiction from acclaimed writer Ellen van Neerven (Mununjali, Yugambeh and Dutch), expanding the limits of current realities. Artist Kait James (Wadawurrung) uses collage to subvert the loaded visual language of 70s souvenirs, while Michael Cook (Bidjara) creates fantasy worlds where the role of invader and invaded are reversed. Josh Muir’s (Gunditjmara, Yorta Yorta and Barkindji) supersized artwork reminds us to reach for the stars, and imagine our wildest dreams coming true.
These works across the square offer alternate narratives and ways of seeing the world, and collectively speak to the unlimited sovereign connections held across communities in Australia.
The Blak Infinite is curated by Kimberley Moulton (Yorta Yorta) (Shadow Spirit, 2023) and Kate ten Buuren (Taungurung).
“Kimberley and Kate would like to acknowledge the immense impact Josh Muir had on Australian contemporary art and Koorie Victoria. We honour his legacy and encourage people to visit his current solo exhibition at the Koorie Hertiage Trust Melbourne. Rest in power and love Josh, forever Deadly.”


The Blak Infinite expands as we sit down to go deeper into the themes radiating from some of the program’s major works.

At 1.30pm in The Atrium join Tony Albert (Girramay, Yidinyji and Kuku Yalanji) and his collaborator ENOKi (DjaDja Wurrung and Yorta Yorta) for a chat about the senses of alienation and belonging threaded through Tony’s installation BEAM ME UP: The Art of Abduction.

At 3pm, head over to The Edge where Michael Cook (Bidjara) and Kait James will speak on how their artworks flip the script on the colonised and the coloniser by offering alternate realities that recontextualise dominant narratives.

Then, at 4pm, stay at The Edge to hear from Tarryn Love (Gunditjmara, Keerray, Woorroong) and her collaborator Studio Gilay’s Jake Duczynski (Gomeroi, Mandandanji) as they discuss Tarryn’s projection work ngaka – look here that’s set to light the Square each evening with stories of Sky Country and the cosmos.

All talks are free to attend. View Session Details for specific talk times.