Boorun's Canoe

Past Event: 6 July 2012 to 7 November 2012

man in canoe on water
Aboriginal artist Steaphan Paton pilots the first traditional canoe to be floated for generations in Gippsland waters.
Cam Cope

A story of cultural pride and intergenerational knowledge.

Boorun’s Canoe celebrates the traditions of Victorian Aboriginal culture and promotes its continuation and strength.

The exhibition tells the story of how Senior Gunai/Kurnai Elder Uncle Albert Mullett taught his grandson, Steaphan Paton, and other young men in his family, to build a bark canoe, an age old tradition that has been practised for many years by the Gunai/Kurnai people of Gippsland. Boorun’s Canoe is a significant project showcasing the strength and pride of cultural knowledge being passed through generations and the vital importance of community maintaining and teaching culture.

Featuring in the exhibition will be the canoe and a series of powerful images taken by photographic artist Cam Cope that captures the canoe's creation and floating by Steaphan and his family. Also part of the exhibition is a short film featuring the first floating of the canoe and the Gunai/Kurnai creation story of Boorun and Tuk, as told by Uncle Albert and his family in the heart of Gunai/Kurnai bushland near Lake Tyers.

Comments (7)

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Melanie 9 May, 2012 19:39
This is such an amazing concept and the photos are full of character. It is so wonderful to see the old traditions being revived so we can admire and respect the traditional owners of the land.
Beth Boughton 22 June, 2012 15:24
Congratulations on this important exhibition "Boorun’s Canoe" With the revival of Aboriginal Culture we as a nation will be enriched as we learn and appreciate the skills and ways that Aboriginal people connected to this land and waters.
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Ronald 28 July, 2012 13:50
i love to see this deadly show, Love the "boorun's Canoe" i hope thats this show can come down to gippsland way too ist be a deadly show for koorie week down in gippsland. this is the best show ever to show the wider community about the dreamtimes story and let the whole austraila knowing about how our people come to gippsland with this traditional dreamtime story that past down from out elders of G/K tribe " DEALDY SHOW CONGARS (SP)O love this story and you done deadly on showing the wider people that this our story and share it. DEADLY [-O-]
Will 12 August, 2012 15:12
This is a solid exhibition and worth seeing whilst being showcased in Bunjilaka, recommend this to anyone! It clearly shows that our people are still here today,strong in culture/kinship and still being able to learn to adapt with traditional ways plus the new!
Brad Kenny 15 August, 2012 15:17
Hi all, we have 8 Koori students coming down from East Gippsland on the 4th of September from Lucknow primary school to see the Museum. It would be great to have a local person there to talk to the kids about the exhibition that is on show. Regards Brad Kenny
Nicholas 16 November, 2012 00:43
Looks amazing - ashamed I've missed it! Thanks for the online materials
Lynnette Solomon-dent 20 July, 2014 09:07
Uncle has always been very strong in us learning about culture and education he calls it being educated in both ways. Education is the future of our people is what he always said and about getting that piece of paper also. He used to say I am not answerable to govt dept only my ancestors and this you can see by the way he passed on his knowledge to his children and his nieces nephew, grandchildren or nay who wanted to learn. This canoe he did with the boys will be something we will treasure forever as it was the last major thing he made before becoming sick. Everyone should see it and learn that our culture is living it is still being passed down by our amazing Elders like my Uncle Albert and Aunty Rachael Mullett I am proud to have learnt from them