On display in our Window Gallery for July is the stunning collaborative ‘national costume’ worn by Wagga’s own Rose Quartz in Miss First Nation 2019, a talent-based pageant for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander drag entertainers.

Rose grew up in Wagga Wagga and has entertained audiences in local regional venues to great acclaim. The Miss First Nation pageant was Rose’s first step out of town and into the arena of the professional drag industry. The First Nation pageant was held over 4 days and had the queens presenting in several sections: best national costume, talent night, lip sync superstar and drag performance of choice for the Grand Final. The National Gown featured was the creative vision of a collaboration of incredible local artists.

The raffia woven headpiece was designed and created by Wiradjuri Elder Aunty Lorraine Tye. Her respected works have been shown at many different Riverina events and her passion for the work shone through.

Kamilaroi Women and award winning artist Juanita McLauchlan, hand painted the two meter train in her traditional style, depicting a story of a bush fire bursting through new life, which was tied into the gowns bodice. The messenger stick was created with the branch of a local gum tree, bond with the paper bark and emu feathers.

The gowns feather work was conceived, designed and painstakingly individually hand applied by the Wiradjuri man Mitch Summerfield, starting at the hip and bursting out of the bust, Mr. Summerfield creative concept was to pay homage to the emu feathers being a sub totem symbol of the Kamilaroi people representing a great application of time, energy and love to all spiritual pursuits and guides all those who seek knowledge down the path of wisdom.

The construction of the dress was done by studio Valkyrie in Wagga Wagga specialising in men’s Ballet and costuming. The off-the shoulder gown represented rebirth, Elegance, Love and pride of country and would not have been possible without the connecting of all these local artists.

61162440_2701676899904665_6964671104078053376_o (1)image1

THIS WORK IS A PART OF OUR ‘ARTISTS TO THE SHOP FRONT” SERIES. OVER THE NEXT TWELVE MONTHS, WE’LL BE OFFERING A FREE EXHIBITION SPACE IN THE WINDOW OF OUR FITZMAURICE STREET OFFICE. DO YOU HAVE A PIECE/ PIECES YOU’D LIKE TO EXHIBIT? GET IN TOUCH WITH US OR FILL OUT THE APPLICATION FORM HERE.