This artwork is a reflection of the Gweagal peoples, Kurnell, Cronulla Sharks families, surrounding communities and an acknowledgement to the Aboriginal lands of the Sharks home ground. It pays respect to players of the sharks and Elders of the local communities past, present and emerging.
Gweagal people are known as fire people. They have many song lines which are known as ‘Fire Stories’ that relate to the flames which spark a sense of connectedness and warmth in culture, family and tradition. They used fire as a resource for survival, protection and warmth for shelter.
I call my artwork ‘The Unseen’; I paint memories, emotions, songs, feelings etc. I make the invisible, visible. Looking out at a sunrise I thought it was important to include. Being saltwater people, the ocean are home, its contents is part of our dreaming and lifestyle, and fire continues to be survival and protection. The imagery of ocean and fires are a perfect image of self-reflection. Our eyes initiate memories in our mind, which reflect on the past, expose the present so we can foresee our future.
Captain Cooks arrival was met and resisted by the Gweagal people. The sillhouette is a representation of that strength, resilience and pride of survival. Outlined are the Gweagal spears, used for protection, fishing and away of living still carried out today by community. They are a significant part of history and represent
The white central symbol on the front of the jersey is home of the Cronulla Sharks and its players, their journey of growth while being at the club, much like the artwork, the beauty of it is in the process. I met with the Longbottom and Mason families to share their stories.
Circular symbols represent past, present and future. White dotted line on the stomach is an outline of the Kurnell community. 6 wavy dotted lines on the back represent significant beaches and close connected communities from Kurnell to the South Coast. Circle symbols on the top of the cheat represent the men’s and women’s team connected by the shorelines of the ocean.
White columns across the orange on the back represent the fans and their families
The land, sea and sky - grass, sunrise over the ocean (background). Orange dotted line on the chest acknowledges and represents each step our elders took to get us to where we are today.