NODOT Gallery was established to advance local art in all of its diversity. One essential point of departure was that we wanted to promote local styles, patterns and figures, rather than co-opting the style and techniques of Australia's Central Desert and Arnhem Land peoples. Therefore we have a no dot art policy.
Shane Smithers is a Darug man of the Burraberongal clan. His traditional country extends along the Hawkesbury river and extends inland to the top of the Blue Mountains. Shane is an academic with Macquarie University and holds a PhD in Philosophy, and is currently studying for a DCA at UTS. Additionally he is an artist, he paints, carves and sculpts in a range of materials. He uses traditional Aboriginal symbols and designs in a contemporary style, to tell both ancient and modern stories through his works. The patterns and figures used throughout his work are traditional to the Darug people. Shane uses patterns and symbols to tell intricate stories.
In addition to holding large exhibitions in the Blue Mountains and Hunter Valley, most recently Shane won first prize in theInfinities of Blue exhibition held at Fountain Court in NSW Parliament house.
Our vision is to help Aboriginal people more profoundly connect with their traditional country by showing the beauty and diversity and style based purely on local designs, figures and symbols. We hope that the work shown here inspire other Aboriginal people to embark upon a path of discovery where the artistic style of their own country becomes an intricate part of their practice.
Shane paints in acrylic on high quality cotton and/or linen canvas. Larger and more substantial works use a heavier grade of canvas. All large canvases are linen on reinforced frames.
Traditionally wood, stone, shell, resin and ochre among other things were traded between peoples of geographically diverse peoples. Therefore while many of the artefacts that we make are crafted from local materials, we are not adverse to using materials from other areas. We do however draw the line at introduced species, only using materials endemic to this continent. For instance the best clap-sticks are made from Mulga wood sourced from western NSW.
Stone carvings and tools
In ancient times stone tools were made from a range of materials. Knives and spearheads were made from silcrete and chert. Stone axes were made from whole or split river stones. Many of the stone carvings are found on Hawkesbury sandstone platforms.
Shane's knives and stone axes are made from traditional materials. Likewise his shallow relief stone carvings employ Hawkesbury sandstone, thus replicating the common materials and methods.