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Carillon lights up for Reconciliation

Starting tonight, the National Carillon will be used as an electric canvas during National Reconciliation Week 2020 (27 May – 3 June), with a series of narratives and imagery to be projected nightly.

For each of the next eight nights, the Carillon will showcase a different image overlayed by touching messages about the nation’s journey to Reconciliation. The first illustration, on display tonight, is titled Reconciliation, a continuing journey of growth and togetherness by Nikita Ridgeway.

Biripi/Bunjalung artist, Nikita Ridgeway created the designs on which the logo and artwork for National Reconciliation Week (NRW) 2020 are based.

She uses vibrant reds and purples to represent wild bush berries; browns and yellows for seeds collected for food; ochre for ceremony and culture; turquoise for our rivers and oceans; and black and brown for the scales and claws of animals that roam this land.

The symbols show Australians at different stages of the journey of Reconciliation: the smaller dots and circles on the track represent the different stages of the journey of growth and constant connection. The larger circles represent community. The track represents the story and the many ways Reconciliation is celebrated throughout Australia.

The lighting displays are designed to encourage all Australians to reflect upon the part they play – whether big or small – towards Reconciliation.

“With the National Carillon being such an iconic landmark within the Canberra landscape, what better way to be part of these national activities than lighting up the Carillon for the nation to see,” National Capital Authority (NCA) chair, Terry Webster, said.

“These are powerful messages and images and I would like to personally thank everyone for their contribution to this important project. We hope the nation enjoys seeing these messages against the backdrop of Lake Burley Griffin.”

The NCA is an active participant in National Reconciliation Week 2020 and the display has been made possible through the creativity and support of numerous contributors and Indigenous communities.

Director of events and activations at the NCA, Suzanna Hannema, said it has been a privilege to work with all the various organisations in assembling the project.

“This has been a true collaboration by all involved. While COVID-19 has made this year’s National Reconciliation Week a difficult one for outside events, this series of projections allows the messages of Reconciliation to be shared by all.”

The projections will run for eight nights between 6pm and 11pm from Wednesday 27 May until Wednesday 3 June.

Details of the nightly projections are:

Wednesday 27 May

Reconciliation, a continuing journey of growth and togetherness

Artist: Nikita Ridgeway; Narrative created by Reconciliation Australia.

Thursday 28 May

2000 Walks for Reconciliation – In this Together

Image: Montage of various photographs by Glenn Campbell/Newspix, News Ltd/Newspix, Brian Condron/Newspix, Richard Cisar-Wright/Newspix; Narrative created by Reconciliation Australia.

Friday 29 May

Voice, Treaty, Truth

Image: The three themes of the Uluru Statement from the Heart; Narrative created by ACT Reconciliation Council.

Saturday 30 May

Sea of Hands

Artist: Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation (ANTaR); Narrative created by ANTaR, Senator Pat Dodson, Dr Jackie Huggins AM.

Sunday 31 May


Artist: Richie Allan; Narrative created by the United Ngunnawal Elders Council and Winanggaay Language Group.

Monday 1 June

ACT Reconciliation Day

Artist: Lynnice Church; Pledge content developed by ACT Reconciliation Council.

Tuesday 2 June

Trio of Flags

Image: Montage of the Australian Flag, Aboriginal Flag, Torres Strait Island Flag; Narrative created by ACT Reconciliation Council.

Wednesday 3 June

Mabo Day

Artist: Gordon Bennett with permission from National Portrait Gallery and The Estate of Gordon Bennett and Gail Mabo.

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