Lap Lap, 'A Time Like This' exhibition
Lorraine Connelly-Northey is a Waradgeri woman from the Wongaibong language group. Her works are in numerous public and private collections throughout Australia and internationally, including the National Gallery of Victoria.
Lorraine Connelly-Northey is known for her recreations of weaved baskets, dilly bags and other traditional indigenous objects, using found materials, such as scrap metal. Lap Lap (2008), made from steel and barbed wire, is a recreation of a traditional garment that is worn around the groin area: and as such, considers the difficult, or "barbed", field of sexual relations and representations, as well as the danger inherent in negotiating these territories. It is a comment on the way Koori women have been configured in terms of the gender and race.
The sculpture is also used in a photographic work by Bindi Cole, Miss Australia (2008),where the lap-lap is worn by an aboriginal woman burning a bra. Here it takes on a threatening aura, and the lap-lap emerges as a kind of protection, a reclaimed slight which has been turned around on the perpetrators.
A Time like This was an exhibition held at the Margaret Lawrence VCA Gallery 17 July- 16 August as part of the project Are We There Yet? which was funded by the VCA and the National Council of Women of Victoria for the 100 year celebration of Victorian women’s suffrage.