In a land scarred by mining, Elders weave rugs to reclaim Ngurra

19th May 2022

Born out of being surrounded by gaping mining holes left on their Ngurra, Ngalia elders in Leonora are taking the grief from mining and sealing these holes with a large-scale, vibrant artwork using woven rugs.

Reclaim the Void started as a small project and now involves the community who are able to contribute to the restoration of the scarred physical and cultural landscape of WA’s Goldfields.

Reclaim the Void creative director Vivienne Robertson said mining holes have impacted Country all over Australia.

“I do know that across Australia we’ve dug 50,000 mining holes,” she said.

“They say that in five years there won’t be a single natural ridge left.”

Ms Robertson said Reclaim the Void came about from a conversation with the Ngalia elders in Leonora.

“While we were talking with the elders and the community…I asked this question ‘what is your deepest pain?’ and the response from one of the aunties was ‘it’s all those mining holes left all over our Country’,” she said.

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