Brisbane City Council projected former designer of The West End Magazine, Keisha Thomason’s (nee Leon) artwork, Who we are, onto the William Jolly Bridge in early May.

The project, which was curated by BLAKLASH Creative, was a part of the Indigenous Art Program held every May where Brisbane’s streets are transformed into an art exhibition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander works. The artworks use engaging places and spaces, including large scale banners, vitrines and projections, in Brisbane’s laneways and on bridges. Although most of the events around the program were cancelled due to COVID-19, Thomason’s artwork projections still went ahead.

Thomason is a local artist, graphic designer and proud Waanyi & Kalkadoon woman (Mount Isa, Queensland). Keisha’s artwork style is contemporary, influenced by her culture, identity and modern world concepts. Her artwork, Who we are, reflects her interpretation of community and connection. “Community and people are so important to defining who we are. Connecting with people, and sharing stories helps our communities grow and unite. When we are strong and united together, we can change the world for the better,” Thomason says.

Thomason’s artwork aims to make her audience reflect. “If we look back to history, kinship connections gave us our identity. Our culture, community and kinships form the rich tapestry of our DNA and define who we really are. Instead of searching for ‘Who am I?’, we should be understanding ‘Who we are’. Connection is interwoven throughout the artwork. Connection to culture, history, people and country is what shapes our identity. Without the strong unity of connection, we are left isolated and cannot achieve our goals, and constantly left searching for purpose,” she said.

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