Rodney Forbes, ‘Figurehead afloat off 90 Mile Beach ’, 2014, Glenn Green Galleries

From my 2014 exhibition ‘Lohan-Tuka: The Lost White Woman of Gippsland’, this painting looks at the settlement-era myth of a white woman in captivity with the Gunai-Kurnai tribe of Southern Australia. The story was used as a pretext for punitive massacres of the Aboriginals. This figurehead was a key part of the story, as the Gunai-Kurnai surrendered a ship’s figurehead that was in their possession, in an attempt to placate the Whites.

Image rights: © Rodney Forbes

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