The recent death of Yami Lester brings to prominence again the long struggle of activists regarding the impacts of the British atomic tests at Maralinga in the 1950s. Black Mist Burnt Country is a national touring exhibition, which commemorates the 60th anniversary of the tests. The exhibition uses artworks in various mediums by Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists to highlight the Maralinga story.
The works in the exhibition actually cover 70 years, from the first atomic test in Hiroshima and the post-World War II era, through anti-nuclear protest in the 1980s to the present day. The exhibition commenced in September 2016 and is currently at the Pinnacles Gallery in Townsville. Other venues are listed on the website. The exhibition recently received the Museums Australia Victoria Small Museums Award.
The Honest History site includes material on Maralinga: Aileen Palmer on Maralinga; Elizabeth Tynan’s book on the tests, including reviews and related material; Judith Crispin’s research project on the people affected; Alison Broinowski’s review of some 2016 events commemorating the tests.
5 August 2017
Maralinga Prohibited Area sign on Emu-Nawa Road, 1974 (NAA A6457, 7818706)