Welcome to Country
It is important that those who are on the traditional lands of Australia’s First Peoples are right-minded and cleansed. Ngunnawal Elder Jude Barlow welcomes us to Ngunnawal Country; the land on which the AIATSIS building 'Maraga' sits.
Art and authenticity
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art is an expression of people’s identity, culture, spirituality and relationships to Country. It tells stories of ceremony and Creation and connects people to ancestors and kin. Learn about what you can do to support its ethical trade.
AIATSIS: a reflection of history
This year marks sixty years since the 1961 conference that led to the establishment of AIATSIS. The history of AIATSIS is as much a history of the changing relationship between Australia’s First Peoples and the Australian nation. It’s a history that spans sixty years of political and social transformation led mainly by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and allies.
Eddie Koiki Mabo
Eddie Koiki Mabo led a landmark legal case that succeeded in overturning the fiction of terra nullius – ‘land belonging to no one’. What motivated Mabo to take on a ten-year legal challenge?
A map of diversity
The AIATSIS map is a visual reminder of the richness and diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australia.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have occupied the lands and waters of Australia for millennia. Since the beginning of colonisation, Australia’s First peoples have defended their lands and waters and asserted their rights to their homelands. Learn about a few of the historical moments of the land rights movement in Australia.
Australia's First Peoples
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are the first peoples of Australia with many different and distinct groups, each with their own culture, language, beliefs and practices. It is because of this diversity that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples identify in lots of different ways.
Missions, stations and reserves
In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, many First Australians were forced from their Country and on to missions, reserves or stations. Broadly speaking, there were three types of spaces set aside by different governments specifically for Aboriginal people to live on: missions, stations and reserves.
Henry 'Seaman' Dan
Henry Gibson Dan or Seaman Dan as he was affectionately known, was the ripe age of seventy when he released his first album with music producer, Karl Neuenfeldt. Undoubtedly Australia’s oldest ‘gigging’ musician and recording artist, Seaman Dan continued to delight audiences well into his eighties.
The 1965 Freedom Ride
In 1965, a group of students from the University of Sydney drew national and international attention to the appalling living conditions of Aboriginal people and the racism that was rife in New South Wales country towns. Known as the Freedom Ride, this 15-day bus journey through regional New South Wales would become a defining moment in Australian activism.
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