Brisbane Dreaming: Shimmering in the sun

Brisbane Dreaming: Shimmering in the sun
Mianjin Productions
WARNING: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are advised that the following program may contain images and/or audio of deceased persons
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This 1994 documentary is about the original Indigenous custodians of the Brisbane area.

The clip shows aerial shots of modern day Brisbane and the voice-over narration tells us of the legacy of natural phenomena and Indigenous culture upon which the city of Brisbane is built.

Summary by Romaine Moreton

This clip introduces the Indigenous peoples of the area now known as Brisbane. Brisbane Dreaming moves between archaeological, anthropological and Indigenous cosmology to speak about the many relationships that are representative of Brisbane as we know it today. Indigenous cosmology and connection to place is explained as being on par with the life cycle of the butterfly; in the first dimension we are the egg, in the second the grub, in the present human dimension the cocoon, and then we are born into the spirit world after maturing on earth. Brisbane Dreaming continues to move back and forth between these different schools of thought in order to give the audience an informed perspective of Brisbane.

Brisbane Dreaming synopsis

This documentary is about the original Indigenous custodians of the Brisbane area.

Brisbane Dreaming curator's note

This well-researched documentary uses historical footage and re-enactments to tell the story of the Indigenous peoples of the Brisbane area. With a well-weighted script, it manages to depict the intimacy with which Indigenous peoples lived in connection with the land and draws on colonial accounts from historical documents without disempowering or demoralising the Indigenous position. The filmmakers weave throughout many different schools of thought – archaeological, anthropological, Indigenous cultural and cosmological views – in order to present Brisbane as a myriad of complex relationships formed by different beliefs and experiences. The filmmakers ask us to 'look around, feel the presence’ that makes up modern-day Brisbane.

Notes by Romaine Moreton

Romaine Moreton