Tuesday, 1 February 2011

ABC Wednesday, C of Cockatoo and Cape York






Cockatoo: My Life in Cape York by Roy McIvor.
Magabala Books.
My daughter in Australia wrote this book together with a friend of hers. They went several times a week to Roy McIver, who is an uncle of my daughter's first husband, and recorded his stories on an audio cassette. Back at home she put these stories on the computer and printed them. It took her and her friend two years to finish the book in Roy McIver's own words. The cockatoos are the tribal animals of two tribes in Cape York. They are also symbolic for the reconcilliation of the white Australian people and the Aborigines.

The exile of the Indigenous population of Hope Valley — in the coastal region of Cape York in far north Queensland — during World War II is a shameful yet seldom-told chapter in Indigenous Australian history. Roy McIvor was just 10 when he, his family and his community were rounded up by the military and shipped 1500 km south to Woorabinda because of allegations that his people were collaborating with the Japanese under the guidance of German Lutheran Missionary George Heinrich Schwarz. Roy’s community was deserted by the authorities and more than a third of them perished during their seven-year exile. They were decimated by disease amid rumours of deaths by lethal injections and medical experimentation. Cockatoo: My Life in Cape York is an inspirational story of how Roy and his people triumphed over the hardships to which they were subjected, and their eventual return to their country now known as Hope Vale. Throughout his life, art has been a guiding light. Today Roy is recognised as one of Cape York’s leading Indigenous artists and Cockatoo: My Life in Cape York features full-colour reproductions of his work.


Vicki Lane wrote about this book last year some months ago now.

With thanks to Denise Nesbitt, who created ABC.We started a new round of the fascinating meme of ABC. For more interesting ABC posts click on the logo in the sidebar or Here. This week we are looking for words beginning with C.

23 comments:

Jingle said...

you teach us stuff,
informative C post.

Hildred and Charles said...

Beautiful artistry, and a sad tale of history.

photowannabe said...

Fascinating information and such lovely work. Thank you for sharing his story and artistry with us.

Jedediah said...

The art is amazing. Thank you for introducing this artist.

Pat - Arkansas said...

A fascinating "C" subject, Wil. Thanks.

Sylvia K said...

What a great and interesting post for the C Day, Wil! Amazing art and definitely fascinating information -- as always! Hope your week is off to a great start! Enjoy!

Sylvia

SandyCarlson said...

What an incredible project. Gorgeous post. Thanks for telling us about this.

anthonynorth said...

There are so many sad tales regarding indigenous peoples. Terrible.

jeannette said...

Thank you for sharing the history of these people, which I had no knowledge of - very sad.
I love his art work, especially "the raindrops." It's mesmerizing!

George said...

Thank you for a very informative 'C' post on ABC Wednesday. Your daughter did a wonderful thing in collecting the stories and writing the book of this artist.

Gigi Ann said...

Very interesting post again Wil. I esp. enjoyed the slide show. Thanks for sharing with us all today.

Vicki Lane said...

Yes, I did! Such an interesting story and wonderful illustrations!

ρομπερτ said...

Concratulations upon this achievement, being able to hold time still, to be remembered. Much respect for that. Please have a good Wednesday.



daily athens

Kay L. Davies said...

I remember when you had another post about this book, Wil, and it is just as fascinating now. I don't know of many countries where the indigenous people were treated well by the "settlers" or, as they were called in Central America, "conquistadores" or conquerors.
-- K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

Tumblewords: said...

I remember reading something about him earlier and finding him endlessly fascinating. Thank you for this post!

Kay said...

Beautiful, Wil. I love your header photo. By the way, I'm posting something about the Netherlands tomorrow. :-)

Grace and Bradley said...

What a moving story, I am glade that his story is now passing down and remembered. Happy Chinese New Year.

Arkansas Patti said...

What a sad but needs to be told story. It is wonderful that your daughter did this for him.
His art work is so amazing.
She and he are very special people.

chubskulit said...

Very interesting!

C is for Crystallized Twigs, please come and see.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Wonderful writing Wil - thank you for giving us a taste of the indigenous people.

Rosey said...

Sometimes it is heartbreaking to hear how humans treat each other.
May we all remember and learn.
Thanks

Dina said...

Your slideshow is a good tribute too, Wil.

Janice Thomson said...

Loved this post Wil. How wonderful your daughter exposed this man's art for the world to enjoy!