Culture Wars/Current Controversies

Aboriginal artist is looking for an Australian of British descent to donate their ‘dead body’ for a morbid art installation ‘atoning for the sins of colonialism’

By Olivia Day For Daily Mail Australia

  • Aboriginal artist requests Australian’s ‘dead body’
  • Applicants must be of British descent
  • Artwork will aim to ‘atone’ for sins of colonialism 
  • Several people have responded to artist’s request

An Aboriginal artist has asked an Australian of British descent to donate their ‘dead body’ for a gruesome artwork that will ‘atone’ for the sins of colonialism.

Nathan Maynard, a well-known artist and playwright, posted an advertisement for a dead body in the Saturday edition of The Age newspaper last week.

Mr Maynard signed the bizarre request as a ‘palawa’ artist – one of the terms Tasmanian Aboriginal people use when referring to themselves.

‘Palawa artist wanting to find an Australian of British descent who is willing to donate their future deceased body to an art installation,’ the notice read.

‘The work will speak to sacrifice for past sins perpetrated against the palawa.  Potential applicants should see this opportunity as an honour.

‘The body and memory of the successful applicant will be treated with the utmost respect at all stages of the project.’

Mr Maynard told Daily Mail Australia that about half a dozen people had already applied for their body to be used in the installation in November.


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