Honouring Bungaree

Published on WO John O’Brien (author), AB Chantell Bianchi (photographer)

Topic(s): Bungaree Indigenous Performance Group

(l-r) Able Seaman Boatswains Mate Kaleb Cohen, Able Seaman Electronics Technician Alan Lucas and Able Seaman Boatswains Mate Arthur Bagie are part of the 'Bungaree' Performance Group at the opening ceremony of the Bungaree’s Farm art exhibition at Georges Heights, Sydney.


 (photo: ABIS Chantell Bianchi)
(l-r) Able Seaman Boatswains Mate Kaleb Cohen, Able Seaman Electronics Technician Alan Lucas and Able Seaman Boatswains Mate Arthur Bagie are part of the 'Bungaree' Performance Group at the opening ceremony of the Bungaree’s Farm art exhibition at Georges Heights, Sydney.

On 30 January the Navy Indigenous Performance Group 'Bungaree' was the centre of attention, performing a variety of dance routines at the official opening by Mosman Council of an exhibition to mark the 200th anniversary of the establishment of Bungaree's Farm at the Camouflage fuel tanks, Mosman, New South Wales.   

The group was led by Chief Petty Officer Ray Rosendale, Chief of Navy's Strategic Adviser on Indigenous Affairs.  

Chief Petty Officer Rosendale said it was an honour and a privilege to perform at the 200th anniversary, as Bungaree was a great man and a true leader in the early colony of Sydney. He also said the Navy Indigenous Performance Group was named Bungaree in acknowledgment of his contribution to the nation. As a team we were very honoured to be able to perform in front of descendants of Bungaree at the commemoration. The opportunity to have your ancestor publically acclaimed and acknowledged is very special and is particularly important to Indigenous Australians.

The Royal Australian Navy's Indigenous PerformanceGroup 'Bungaree', perform in front of a crowd during the opening ceremony of the Bungaree’s Farm art exhibition at Georges Heights, Sydney.

The Royal Australian Navy's Indigenous PerformanceGroup 'Bungaree', perform in front of a crowd during the opening ceremony of the Bungaree’s Farm art exhibition at Georges Heights, Sydney.

Commanding Officer HMAS Penguin Commander Paul Gall also attended the launch and said it was a great performance and it was very fitting that the Navy group were there in support.

"The Navy Performance Group certainly made a great impression and the crowd was both delighted and impressed with the spectacle they provided, which certainly enhanced the reputation of HMAS Penguin and the Navy across the local community", he said.

The exhibition displays contemporary Aboriginal audio, video performance and installation art which aims to explore the legacy of Bungaree the man, and marking the 200th anniversary of the establishment of Bungaree's Farm by Governor Macquarie on 31 January 1815.