Barbara is a woman with Determination, and has been like that for as long as she can remember. Having spent endless times in hospitals during her childhood and youth, where she became accustomed to operations, hospital rehab times, walking with crutches, and the never-ending optimism of the doctors and nurses, has given her the determination she needed in life. Nothing ever could stop her energy and drive.
She has always been an inquisitive rebel, and eventually she found in stage design the degree that was just perfect. Qualifying honours with a Master of Arts only just got her started, and after she was exposed to the Aboriginal culture through the Tjapukai Dancers in her native Austria, she decided to take her newly learned knowledge in a different direction. She travelled to Australia to learn about the country, its history, its cultural ancestors and the first people. The moment she experienced the intense colours of nature, the fiery red earth, the lush green rainforest, and the seemingly endless blue sea, she was hooked. But she wanted to experience first hand who the first people were, what they did, their art, their dance, and their life today in modern Australia. She was determined to work with the Indigenous People, learn from them, about them, and about their history – not as easy as she thought as a white female in this male dominant culture. But she succeeded. Her perseverance and determination was rewarded when she was accepted by this proud culture. She was invited to stay for a few months and learn. This ancient culture with its intense history hit her heart, and she remains as passionate about it today as she was all those years ago.
Eventually she returned to stay. Living in Australia she experienced first hand what cultural displacement can feel like. That fuelled her determination to find a solution for the displacement she experienced here, the cultural displacement the first people experienced, and the displacement a lot of immigrants experience and have to deal with. This knowledge is reflected in her Dance Production ‘Mundu – a journey’.
Barbara is on a mission to offer a solution and strategy for people who are dealing with cultural or personal displacement. Cultural displacement refers both to physical displacement and a sense of being socially or culturally ‘out of place’ and is a very real problem. She believes that it is important to know and understand where you come from. It gives you a grounding, a base, a platform from which to work. Her mission is all about Determination and Change. Whether through the Dance Productions or Workshops, her ability to connect with people in a way that is honest and direct produces long-lasting results and continuing friendships.
Colin Jones, MA
Advisor to Aboriginal history, culture and art
Colin Jones is a scholar and an expert on Aboriginal culture, art and history. He has intimate connections with the subject matter since he is a proud Aboriginal Australian, born in Queensland. With strong ties to his native country, he has gained recognition as one with a voracious appetite for researching the history of the Aboriginal Australian people as well as their expressions of life through art. He has traveled all over the world to share his experience and knowledge of the Aborigines. These lectures locations include Europe (Germany, UK, France, Holland, Sweden…), US and numerous locations in Australia.
Colin is a historian as well as an artist. He was commissioned by the Premier of Queensland to create Aboriginal artwork for Vice Admiral Bob Natter, USN-USS Blue Ridge. He consults with various public and private entities on their acquisitions, collections, and display of Aboriginal art.
Because of his passion for people and commitment to service, he has held many prominent positions. He has guided policy and direction through his governmental service appointments for Protective Services, Juvenile Justice, Children’s Shelter and Aboriginal Affairs as well as Family Services.
He completed extensive graduate work in the Humanities with a curriculum that includes Aboriginal Culture and History, British Law and Justice, Australian History and Politics, Crime Prevention, Conflict Resolution and Criminology and Juvenile Crime.
Colin Jones’ research has enabled him to weave an extremely rich and diverse collective cultural history of the Aboriginal people of Australia. He welcomes the opportunity to enlighten others and share his perspectives on this subject matter.