Brad Turner x Mr. Smith

In celebration of NAIDOC Week, we have once again collaborated with Indigenous Australian Artist Brad Turner, to develop a Limited Edition Volumising Set.

We sat down with Brad and asked him a few questions in regard to this year’s artwork and the importance of literacy support for remote Indigenous communities, as we donate profits to the Indigenous Literacy Foundationfor a consecutive year.

 

Can you tell us a little bit about where you were born?

I was born and raised on Bundjalung Country — the land of the saltwater people, which covers the coastal border between Northern NSW and South East Qld.

 

We know your daughter was the main inspiration behind your journey into picking up the paintbrush. Has anyone else in your family ever painted?

My daughter is definitely my main inspiration, growing up I didn’t know a lot about cultural art but having her understand its importance to our heritage was important to me. I do have other family members who paint however not professionally.

 

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Talk us through your creative process when you go to start a new piece. Have you ever had a piece that you weren’t happy with?

Feeling connected to country allows me to be more creative and to spiritually tap into the meaning and vision behind each artwork. If I am painting an artwork for a client I will generally start with a story and design brief which helps me get clarity. My artwork is very intuitive so if something doesn’t seem right I will leave it and come back at a later stage this gives me time to look at it from another perspective.

 

Before making your artistic hobby your full time job, you were a courtesy bus driver for the local RSL. How has this unexpected opportunity changed your life?

I feel humbled and so grateful for the opportunity to do what I love everyday. Being an Indigenous Artist has allowed me to work and partner with some amazing brands and charities who support Indigenous communities in need.

 

What do you love most about being an Indigenous artist?

Probably the best thing about being an Indigenous Artist is sharing my art with the wider community, raising awareness of Aboriginal and Torres Strait culture. I also love the freedom and creativity it brings!

 

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Can you tell us a bit about this year’s artwork that you created for us and the story behind it?

The artwork created was inspired by the botanical ingredients used in the products, such as Lavender. 

Aboriginal culture has traditionally used Bush Medicine as a holistic approach to healing and wellness. Ancient knowledge and traditions that have been in practice for thousands of years and passed down through the generations. It comes from our deep connections to our land, native botanical, our ancestors, and our stories.

 

The theme for NAIDOC week this year is ‘Get Up! Stand Up! Show up!’. What does this theme mean to you?

This year’s NAIDOC theme ‘Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up! Encourages the wider community to move beyond acknowledgement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait people; to focus on creating real systemic change for equal rights and even basic human rights for our mob, our Elders, our communities.

 

In celebration of NAIDOC week, we are once again supporting the Indigenous Literacy Foundation. In your eyes, how important is it for remote Indigenous communities to receive this type of support and close the literacy gap?

Our remote Indigenous communities are home to some of Australia’s most disadvantaged young people. The problem stems, in part, from the stark difference in the basic cost of necessities, available resources and infrastructure. The Indigenous Literacy Foundation provides culturally relevant books and learning resources to children and families living in remote Communities across Australia who otherwise would not have access, helping close the literacy gap.

 

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Style. Substance. Simplicity.

Mr. Smith

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