Snapper captures Islamic spirit in a different light

Photo: Stuart Miller

NITV is celebrating Race Week by collaborating with leading Australian photographer, Stuart Miller, to present a photo essay of portraits of Indigenous Australian Muslims.

The concept stemmed from a thought-provoking quote from boxing legend Anthony Mundine who once said; “I’m three things that you shouldn’t be in this society, and that’s Muslim, Aboriginal and outspoken.”

The 2011 National Census has reported that over 1,140 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people identify as Muslim and as part of SBS’ campaign #FU2RACISM, this photo series challenges preconceptions of minority groups and celebrates the diversity in our community. The series of portraits aims to look at First Nations’ Australians in a wider context, the Muslim faith in Indigenous Australia and open a dialogue about Australian identity.

Photographer Stuart Miller said; “This series of work is a way to visually break down pre-conceived ideas, showcasing a rich and diverse section of Australian culture. Many people don’t register the idea that Indigenous Australians can have diverse faiths, and in this case, practice Islam.

“We felt it was important to photograph the subject’s in their home, or places of personal significance. Everyone in this series has unique stories of their journey to the Islam faith, and I felt incredibly privileged to be invited in to their homes, listening to their stories, and photographing them in a place of importance to them.”

Channel Manager for NITV, Tanya Orman, said; “Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have always told stories through different art forms, and photography is a great way to speak through visuals.

“These striking images show our people’s diversity and opens a discussion about faith and religion in our communities. These are people who are dedicated to their faith, but are still committed to keeping their culture strong. We are privileged to have them share their stories with us.”

As our country has become more multicultural and openly political, NITV looks at how this faith has developed and continues to give many Indigenous people pride.

To see the whole essay, got to www.sbs.com.au

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