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Aboriginal art centre to be the first to present a solo show at Australian Fashion Week

Emma Ruben -

In 2022 they had their designs showcased on the cover of Vogue. In 2023, they'll have their own show at Afterpay Australian Fashion Week.

Aboriginal art centre, Ikuntji Artists, located in the remote community of Haasts Bluff has been selected to present a solo show at the upcoming Australian Fashion Week.

Their show will celebrate the rich, cultural heritage of the Indigenous people of the Western Desert and bring their stories to new audiences.

It is the first time an art centre has had their own show at Afterpay Australian Fashion Week (AAFW). It comes as Aboriginal fashion house Ngali becomes the first Aboriginal label to have its own coveted slot at the annual fashion show.

It comes off the back of a big year for the Ikuntji Artists.

In 2022, their designs were splashed on the May edition of Vogue and again on the runway during the First Nations Fashion and Design show. Later in 2022, their designs were again on the runway during London and Paris Fashion Week.

Ikuntji Artists closing Afterpay Australian Fashion Week in 2022.

Ikuntji Artists closing Afterpay Australian Fashion Week in 2022. (Image: Getty/Lucas Dawson)

This year, they are showcasing a new collection during AAFW, inspired by the ancient landscape of the Western Desert and the Luritja culture of the area.

Artworks by the artists will be brought to life in a creative collaboration by artists and Yorta Yorta, Gomeroi and Wiradjuri creative director Ana Keshan.

Writing on her Instagram, Keshan said she is honoured to help execute such a beautiful and glamorous collection.

"After my trip to Haasts Bluff to connect with the artists and community, I feel a deeper understanding and respect for who they are and how an art centre in a remote Aboriginal community works," she said.

"This collection and runway will be a truly special celebration of how a remote desert art community can stand up tall in the world of high fashion.

"Further adding to the continuous wave of Blak excellence we are fast becoming used to seeing in this space."

Aerial photography of the Haasts Bluff community where Ikuntji Artists are based.

Aerial photography of the Haasts Bluff community where Ikuntji Artists are based. (Image: Christian Koch)

Ikuntji Artists chairperson Roseranna Larry said it's an exciting act to be able to present their first-ever solo show at AAFW.

"We are very excited to be presenting our first-ever solo show at Afterpay Australian Fashion Week," she said.

"It is an incredible opportunity to showcase the rich cultural heritage of our artists and art centre on such a prestigious platform.

"We are excited to work with Ana Keshan, whose creative vision and commitment to cultural storytelling aligns perfectly with our values."

Ikuntji Artists will showcase their collection during AAFW on May 18.

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