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Biting the Clouds : A Badtjala perspective on The Aboriginals Protection and Restriction of the Sale of Opium Act, 1897 - Fiona Foley

Biting the Clouds

A Badtjala perspective on The Aboriginals Protection and Restriction of the Sale of Opium Act, 1897

By: Fiona Foley

Paperback | 3 November 2020

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A striking and compelling book reclaiming history by a renowned Indigenous visual artist.

In this groundbreaking work of Indigenous scholarship, nationally renowned visual artist Fiona Foley addresses the inherent silences, errors and injustices from the perspective of her people, the Badtjala of K'gari (Fraser Island). She shines a critical light on the little-known colonial-era practice of paying Indigenous workers in opium and the 'solution' of then displacing them to K'gari.

Biting the Clouds - a euphemism for being stoned on opium - combines historical, personal and cultural imagery to reclaim the Badtjala story from the colonisation narrative. Full-colour images of Foley's artwork add further impact to this important examination of Australian history.

About the Author

Dr Fiona Foley is from the Wondunna clan of the Badtjala nation. Foley exhibits regularly in Australia and internationally. In 2014 she was the recipient of an Australia Council Visual Arts.

She is a regular keynote speaker at conferences and symposia all over the world. Most recently she convened Courting Blakness- Recalibrating Knowledge in the Sandstone University (2014) at the University of Queensland, where she was an Adjunct Professor (2011-2017).

Foley completed her fourth film titled, Out of the Sea Like Cloud in 2019. Recent exhibitions include a twenty-five year photographic retrospective titled, Who are these strangers and where are they going? Dr Fiona Foley is currently a Lecturer at the Queensland College of Art, Griffith University.

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