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  • Writer's pictureKisani Upward

Close to Fire Research Project: Blog


Throughout my PhD Research Project, 'Close to Fire', I will be using a range of methodologies and processes of conceptulisation.

I will be documenting this process throughout this journey with this blog. This will be a living/working space that will provide an interactive forum for engagement which will provide a referenceable resource for future work. This blog will document artistic process and cultural engagements throughout the study period and will make up a body of work that will be submitted with the final PhD pieces alongside the art forms that are produced alongside the works that come from future healing workshops in our target Communities.

'A Collective Identity' Exhibition at Ceramic Break Sculpture Park, Warialda NSW.

The conceptualisation of this project has been heavily influenced by the work of Dr Tyson Yunkaporta, a Senior Lecturer of Indigenous Knowledges at Deakin University and Author of the book titled ‘Sand Talk: How Indigenous thinking can save the world’.

Dr Yunkaporta discusses the complexity and pattern of an Indigenous way of thinking, being and doing. He emphasises that he wants to ‘use an Indigenous pattern-thinking process to critique contemporary systems, and to impart an impression of the pattern of creation itself’ (Yunkaporta, T., 2019) a feat of which, determining the success of his book, can be seen as rather successful.

Dr Yunkaporta imparts a wisdom that enables the reader to grasp the concept of Indigenist thinking and opens them up to possibility of harnessing this knowledge for personal growth and development.

The way in which an Indigenous thought pattern is processed is vastly different to those who come from a predominantly print based culture. Dr Yunkaporta (2019) states, ‘Mastery of Indigenous epistemology (ways of knowing) demands being able to see beyond the object of study, to seek a viewpoint incorporating complex contextual information and group consensus about what is real’.

Thus, highlighting the importance of documenting my Research process. As an Aboriginal Woman/Researcher, my process incorporates Indigenous Epistemology in every element of my research. IDENTIFYING as Aboriginal is not a definition or solely an Identity, it is a wholistic way of thinking, being and doing. Hence the importance of recording this process as a reference for future research.

If you would like to keep up to date with my process, please feel free to subscribe!

If you know of any research in this space, feel free to email me on or leave a comment with a link.


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