An exhibition featuring painted belly casts created in conjunction with Biripi Aboriginal Midwifery Indigenous Health Service Taree and Worimi Tobwabba Forster will be on display at the Manning Regional Art Gallery until July 14.
Sea of Bellies is presented by community art and cultural development organisation Beyond Empathy, in partnership with the galleryand in celebration of NAIDOC 2019 Voice Treaty Truth.
Along with the exhibition is the launch of the online Sea of Bellies Toolkit, which contains four films made in Forster, Brisbane, Nambucca-Coffs and Moree; a full gallery of beautiful painted belly casts, and a series of How To documents and instructional videos.
Through Beyond Empathy's art meets health strategy, Sea of Bellies practices the art of pregnant belly casting as a way to engage young First Nations' families into health services, encouraging antenatal awareness and building relationships with midwives before giving birth.
Beyond Empathy artist Jo Davidson trains local midwifery teams to make casts of the pregnant Mums' bellies and they are invited to join in with the follow up sculpture and painting processes.
Local women artists are often commissioned to join the group painting belly casts and sharing their culture, stories and skills. If interested, they too can learn the plaster and sculpture process.
The official opening will be held this Tuesday, July 9, 11am at the Manning Regional Art Gallery, all welcome.
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