Ceduna artists have their say on drilling in the Great Australian Bight

Artists from Arts Ceduna are involved in a new exhibition which opens in Adelaide from next Friday.

No Black Seas is a cultural and artistic critique of the proposed drilling in the Great Australian Bight and will be part of the 2019 Tarnanthi Festival from October 18 to December 7.

A collaboration between Arts Ceduna, ACE Open and Ku Arts, the exhibition explores the connection between the Bight and South Australian Matutjara, Mirning, Kokatha, Yindjibarndi and Wirangu peoples.

Mediums include glass, photography, film and installation from Mirning, Kokatha, Yindjibarndi and Wirangu artists under the guidance of established artists Yhonnie Scarce and Ryan Presley.

Arts Ceduna artists involved are Yana Tschuna, Verna Lawrie, Sherrie Jones, Joylene Haynes, Josephine Lennon, Janine Gray, Jaime Newchurch, Collette Gray, Christine Tschuna, Estelle Miller and Beaver Lennon.

Their work navigates cultural and personal connections with the Great Australian Bight and the impact oil drilling could have, while artistically pushing themselves to develop conceptually across new mediums.

Yana Tschuna said she would hate to see the negative effects of an oil spill on the region which her family has called home for generations.

"I don't want to move from here," she said.

"This is where my grandmother is from, and her mother, and her mother, and her mother."

Sherrie Jones said she and the other artists were proud to be involved in the exhibition.

"We are excited about the exhibition, it is for a good cause to save our Bight," she said.

"Jobs will be created by drilling, but if something goes wrong it wrecks our sanctuary, it hurts our tourism and fishing and leaves nothing for the next generation.

"It is about saving nature, and our culture and lifestyle."

Chief executive officer of Ku Arts Marie Falcinella said Ceduna artists were raising the alarm about the potential impact.

"What we see in this exhibition are diverse, independent voices explored through a range of artistic media," she said.

"Artists from Arts Ceduna are raising the alarm for an issue that is not only theirs but all of ours, and has the potential to impact millions of people around Australia's coastline."

Pam Diment worked as a mentor to some of the artists involved and said the exhibition attracted national and international interest, which was good exposure for the Ceduna artists.

She said some pieces across the different mediums took months to complete.

No Black Seas has been developed by the three organisations over the past nine months, with the mentor artists working alongside Ceduna-based artists for a series of residencies in Ceduna and Adelaide, offering the opportunity to push the artists conceptually under a central theme.

You can view No Black Seas at ACE Open on North Terrace in Adelaide between 11am and 4pm from Tuesday to Saturday.

The official opening takes place on Saturday, October 19 and the exhibition is free to visit.

Go to aceopen.art for more details.