Academics from the Faculty of Arts to join in exciting endeavour towards Reconciliation and Cultural Recovery

The Faculty of Arts is excited to announce it has recently received a grant under the Australian Awards Fellowships Program for a project on Reconciliation and Cultural Recovery.

Associate Professor Robyn Sloggett, Director of the Centre for Cultural Materials Conservation, and Dr Edwin Jurriens, Lecturer in Indonesian Studies in the Faculty of Arts' Asia Institute, have been named as two key Fellows in an exciting initiative that seeks to develop leadership, address regional development priorities, and strengthen partnerships and links between Australian organisations and partner organisations in developing countries.

The Reconciliation and Cultural Recovery Program will involve collaboration between the Faculty of Arts, the Victorian College of the Arts, Asialink, the Australian National University, and the University of Tasmania, who will work together to host ten visiting Fellows from Timor-Leste and Indonesia.

Timor-Leste, Indonesia and Australia share experiences throughout modern history of severe disruption by environmental, as well as man-made, disasters through conflict and violence. Each society has used the creation of art and the collection of artefacts as a cultural mechanism to normalise, remember and reconcile intensive experiences. Repositories of art, knowledge and culture, which are often especially vulnerable to disruption, often serve as important symbols of reconciliation and renewal through restoration.

This program brings together a breadth of combined expertise to explore the role that the creation of art, memorialisation and repatriation have on societal resilience and reconciliation. It will focus on contemporary and community arts practice, alongside cultural collections and conservation methods, as a means of informing responses in rebuilding community resilience. As a result of this ambitious endeavour, the contributing Fellows hope to develop a network of expertise, a curriculum framework and a proposed research agenda that intersects arts with knowledge of identity and human health and wellbeing.

The Faculty of Arts looks forward to hearing more about the achievements of this remarkable project, as we welcome the following Fellows to the University of Melbourne:

  • Ms Rosalia E Madeira Soares and Ms Jacquelina Ximenes from Timor Aid, Timor-Leste
  • Mr Luis da Costa Ximenes and Mr Emilio Vicente Noronha from Belun, Timor-Leste
  • Mr Abilio da Silva from the Secretaria de Estado da Arte e Cultura (Secretary of State for Arts and Culture), Timor-Leste
  • Prof Melanita Pranaja Budianta from Universitas Indonesia, Indonesia
  • Mr Alfonzo Koapaha, Mr Deden Hendan Durahman and Mr Aminudin Tua Hamonangan Siregar from the Faculty of Design – Institute Teknologia Bandung, Indonesia
  • Dr Seno Gumira Ajidarma from Institut Kesenian Jakarta, Indonesia