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© Ian Wayne Abdulla/ Licensed by Viscopy, 2017

Fishing in the rain was fun

Date: 1999
Overall: 1220 x 1830 x 35 mm
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Copyright: © Ian Wayne Abdulla
Object Name: Painting
Object No: 00030321
Place Manufactured:South Australia
Related Place:Murray River,

User Terms

    A painting by Ian Abdulla titled 'Fishing in the rain was fun'. The text reads "Fishing in the rain was fun becouse [sic] in the rain the fish would go for the bait much uicker [sic] then in a good sunny day i dont know why but that's just the way the fishing is along the River Murray."

    Abdulla creates 'yarns on canvas', witty visual manifestations of spoken histories. He paints his own experiences growing up along the lower Murray in the 1950s. They are full of love for family members and for the great River Murray and its environs - the fish, frogs, storms, ghosts, mudslides and friendships of childhood.
    SignificanceIan Abdulla uses art to tell his personal history and a history of his people, the stories of their lives on the Murray River, South Australia.
    HistoryIan Abdulla was born at Swan Reach, South Australia in 1947. During Ian's youth there were few permanent employment opportunities and his family, like others along the river, relied on traditional Aboriginal skills and knowledge to survive away from the Mission and the prevailing government policy of assimilation.

    Abdulla's paintings relate to a 30-kilometre stretch of the river between Cobdogla and Katarapto where the Murray River is surrounded by swamps, vineyards and orchards. The paintings are a commentary on the wealth of enjoyment that can be obtained in the face of material hardship.

    The Murray-Darling Basin is Australia's largest river system, food bowl and inland water-transport corridor. Its waterways have been contested for generations - from colonial frontier wars to colour bars at local pools, and between farming and the environment itself. Threatened by salination and erosion, infested by carp and algae and depleted by dams and weirs, the rivers of the Murray-Darling Basin now flow wearily.

    Today the descendants of many alienated Indigenous clans, such as the Ngarrindjeri from the Murray riverland and Kamilaroi from Moree watercourse country, maintain shared histories and knowledge about people, place and the life of the waterways.
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