Ngurrawanna: Rediscovery and Regeneration

Part documentary, part fashion shoot, in a captivating piece of cinema, Yindjibarndi man Wimiya Woodley invites us on an intimate journey of self-discovery, deep into the heart of his ancestral homelands. Ngurrawanna, originally established by Woodley's grandfather, Woodley King, serves as a sanctuary for Yindjibarndi people seeking rejuvenation and reconnection with their roots. Through Ngurrawanna, we witness the transformative power of returning to ancestral lands, where the spirits of the past guide First Nations people towards rediscovering wirrart - essence and strength. 

And, with remarkable happiness for the team, the film took home first prize for the 2023 Monster Children Short Film Award and has been shortlisted for the BAFTA-qualifying Aesthetica Short Film Festival held in York, UK this November.  

Monster Children Short Film Award 

The year 2023 revolves around the theme of "Regeneration," which embodies the concept of rebirth, renewal, and restoring what was once lost. As our planet grapples with the ecological consequences of centuries of human activity, regeneration takes on a vital role in revitalizing our communities and ecosystems. The imperative for regeneration has never been more pronounced. Our Earth, burdened by pollution and degradation, requires a remedy, and regeneration offers a path forward. 

Meet the Esteemed Judges 

  • Malia James: A director known for her versatile style, Malia has directed music videos for renowned artists and worked with prominent commercial clients. Her commitment to projects is palpable on every set, and her work speaks for itself. 

  • Clare Plueckhahn: A director with a diverse portfolio spanning scripted drama, TV commercials, and documentaries. Clare's career is marked by a keen eye for visuals, storytelling, and a roster of prestigious clients in the Australian commercial world. 

  • Peter Meteherangi Tikao Burger: A filmmaker of notable distinction, Peter Burger's work has garnered acclaim and awards. His contributions range from drama to supernatural fantasy, and he's recognized for his impressive television projects.  

Aesthetica Short Film Festival 

The Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF) stands as an international celebration of independent filmmaking. Taking place annually in the picturesque city of York, England, ASFF provides a platform for filmmakers from around the world to showcase their creative prowess. It holds the esteemed title of being a BAFTA-Qualifying festival, allowing screened short films the opportunity to earn BAFTA awards recognition. 

A Journey Facilitated by Support and Mentorship 

Ngurrawaana was brought to life through the collaborative efforts of Garuwa, a Worimi organization from NSW's mid-North Coast, commissioned by Juluwarlu. Juluwarlu expresses its gratitude to Jirra Harvey from Kalinya for their instrumental role in this project. Their mentorship and guidance culminated in a mesmerizing photoshoot and film that speaks to the heart of the Yindjibarndi people. 

Ngurrawanna is more than a documentary; it combines elements of fashion to create a visually stunning and emotionally resonant narrative. It showcases samples and fashion experiments that were nurtured through the Flourish Fashion grant by the Australia Council and a commercial development grant from DLGSC, all woven into this captivating short film. 

As we celebrate Ngurrawanna, let's reflect on the power of storytelling, reconnection with ancestral lands, and the imperative of regeneration. This film serves as a testament to the resilience of Indigenous cultures and their enduring bond with the land. 

Creative Directors - Wimiya Woodley & Iya Ware 
Producer/Director - Kieran Satour 
Producer - Ramona Telecian 
DP - Ryan Andrew Lee
Edit & Grade - Rah Dakota 
Stills Photographer - James Evans 
Marketing Consultant, Kalinya - Jirra Harvey

Talent - Wimiya Woodley, Michael Woodley, John Woodley, Wil Woodley, Curtis Lockyer, Curtis Junior Lockyer, Bowen Larry, Courtney McKay, Rehanni Lockyer, Iya Ware, Deanha Robinson, Misari Walker, Aneisha Larry, Mrs Read, Lorraine Coppin, Tazerendenna Lockyer, Mary Watson, Drew Woodley, Wendy Hubert, Alice Guiness, Pearlina Jacobs, Taj Lockyer, Narani Dann, Rainee-Lee Woodley.

Filmed on the lands of the Yindjibarndi people.