Coomaditchie: Lagoon stories

As part of the celebrations to mark the 30th anniversary of Coomaditchie United Aboriginal Corporation, in 2022 Wollongong Art Gallery commissioned the artists to create a series of 25 panels that would each tell an environmental story about Coomaditchie Lagoon.

The panels detail the ecological life in and around the lagoon; some document the damage caused by introduced species to this important ecosystem. They have been created not only by the Coomaditchie artists but also the corporation’s office staff, arts workers, and the children of Coomaditchie.

Our beautiful butterflies congregate around the lagoon, hiding amongst the cumbungi

Artists Kristy Kristy (Lil) Thomas, Selai Storer and Kanisha Storer, 2022

[Ibises] are another regular of Coomaditchie Lagoon and its array of "Water Birds". Graceful like our cranes.

Artists Lorraine Brown and Narelle Thomas, 2022

This is the start of new life. When we were young, our father taught us how to track turtles and discover their eggs in the sandhills of Coomaditchie Lagoon. These are special memories with our father and his teachings.

Artists Dereke Brown and Allison Day, 2022

At Coomie Lagoon the song of the frogs was blistering loud, especially in the early days. But now you will very rarely hear one.

Artists Lorraine Brown and Narelle Thomas, 2022

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Coomaditchie Lagoon
First Nations

Coomaditchie: The Art of Place

The works of the Coomaditchie artists speak of life in and around the settlement of Coomaditchie, its history, ecology and local Dreaming stories

The first three decades (decade 3), Coomaditchie artists and community members, 2022, acrylic on unstretched canvas, 302cm x 213.5 cm. 
Coomaditchie United Aboriginal Corporation
Now showing
Featured exhibition

Coomaditchie: The Art of Place

Experience community life by the ocean through the works of First Nations artists in Coomaditchie: The Art of Place at the Museum of Sydney. These loving and lyrical artworks, which include paintings, ceramics and screen-prints, speak of life in and around the settlement of Coomaditchie, its history, ecology and local Dreaming stories

Saturday 30 March
Published on 
Tess Allas

Tess Allas

First Nations Curator

Tess Allas is a Wiradjuri curator and has strong links to Tharawal country in Wollongong. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Creative Arts from the University of Wollongong and a Masters of Curation from the University of Sydney. For the past three decades Tess has curated many exhibitions of First Nations contemporary art in both Australia and Internationally for organisations including Wollongong Art Gallery, Carriageworks, Campbelltown Arts Centre, Sydney Opera House, Art Gallery of South Australia, Murray Art Museum Albury, Gorman Museum (University of California), the Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Collection (University of Virginia). In 2021 Tess wrote the Museum of Sydney’s Indigenous Contemporary Art Acquisition Strategy. Tess firmly believes in the power of contemporary art in having the ability to correct history and uncover hidden truths.