The Sharing Stories Arts Exchange (SSAE) is a creative participatory project focussed on building positive reciprocal relationship between the Canberra community and local regional Indigenous and non-indigenous communities. SSAE features learning events in Canberra and a structured creative field program visiting areas along the Bundian Way; a shared historic pathway used by Aboriginal people for tens of thousands of years, linking Mount Kosciuszko with Twofold Bay on the Far South Coast of NSW. The Program is a 3-year cultural exchange project initiated by the ANU School of Art & Design and supported by ArtsACT.
The aim of the program is to have firsthand field experience on Country to expand participant’s knowledge of cultural practices. Participants may include professional artists, professional dancers, local historians, art educators, anthropologists and cultural workers of the ACT.
The Exchange builds on existing shared values by way of active reconciliation: learning from local Indigenous people and increasing awareness and understanding of the complexities of culture and reconciliation. SSAE welcomes participation from the ACT community.
The Bundian Way Arts Exchange was officially launched on Monday 18 March 2019 at the ANU School of Art & Design. The launch included a presentation by John Blay, author of On Track: Searching Out the Bundian Way, distinguished guest Uncle Ossie Cruse.
The leaders of the SSAE Field Program are Dr Amanda Stuart and Ms Amelia Zaraftis. In 2018 they were awarded the Australian National University Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Reconciliation for their work leading the Balawan Elective.