Artist: Jack Green
Our Land: We never forget what’s been done – 2021
Paintings – Acrylic on Canvas – 61 x 61 cm
Glencore, the mining giant, came into our country like a virus and dug a huge, big hole, like a great basin right where McArthur River used to flow. Glencore blocked the river, diverted the water and dug up one of our sacred sites.
The McArthur River Mine is trapped within our sacred sites. Each day it keeps getting bigger and bigger threatening more of the sacred sites nearby. Glencore, supported by the NT government don’t care and just keep digging and digging and slowly killing us.
The two men on the left, standing at the water’s edge are really worried about what’s been done. They are standing on the line of The Snake that came in from the south side. The man at the top, he’s standing at the place where another Snake came in from the north. He’s waving his ceremonial boomerang pointing to where The Snake goes on his journey but all he sees is a huge, big hole and lots of damage to his Country. The man on the right is standing at the sacred site of the Barramundi Dreaming worried about the mine’s waste rock dump getting bigger and bigger and closer and closer to the site. The men, like all of us Gudanji, Garrwa, Marra and Yanyuwa people, are deeply hurt with what’s been done to our Country.
While people today got the virus (COVID-19), it’s not the first time we got a virus. First time we got a virus was the when the whitefellas invaded our land and killed our people. Now, today, we got another kind of virus that is called Glencore. It works quietly, digging away, destroying our sacred sites. When they damage our sacred sites, they damage us. It gets inside us just like a virus gets inside you and it will slowly kill us.