Australian Biography: Elizabeth Durack


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1988, 26 Minutes

In 1997 the art world was shocked by the announcement from Western Australian artist Elizabeth Durack, that she and Aboriginal artist, Eddie Burrup, whose work had recently begun to appear in art galleries and exhibitions of Aboriginal art, were one and the same person.

Why would a white woman in her eighties, stereotyped as “a relic of old colonialism”, a relic of conservatism, and daughter of a famous Western Australian pioneer, appropriate Aboriginal culture in such a way?

In this fascinating interview, Elizabeth Durack talks of a life of reconciliation: of her family with Aboriginal families growing up in the Kimberley region; of a tragic past with a more hopeful future; of her dual roles as single mother and professional artist in the mid 20th century; and ultimately of her two personas, Elizabeth and Eddie.  

A Film Australia National Interest Program. Made in association with SBS TV. © 2011 National Film and Sound Archive of Australia.

NB The Australian Biography series (1-11) are only available for sale within the territories of Australia and New Zealand.



Producers/Directors:Robin Hughes, Linda Kruger

Interviewer: Robin Hughes

Year: 1998

Running Time: 26 Minutes

Classification: Exempt from classification

Curriculum Links: Beliefs and Values, Community and Family Studies, English, Indigenous Studies, Legal Studies, Society and Culture, SOSE, Visual Arts, Women's Studies.


On Sacred Ground


SKU 199600905
Brand Film Australia

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