An exhibition developed in consultation with Ngangki Burka, Senior Kaurna Woman Aunty Lynette Crocker, and Uncle Moogy Sumner
Ruled Us, Ruled Us, Ruled Us is a sound, sculpture and digital collage work on the transmutations that South Australia’s social and physical environment has undergone since first contact with British settlers. Inside the Museum of Economic Botany the voice of Aunty Lynette Crocker tells of the ongoing impact of colonisation, not only on First Nations people, but also the plants and animals which live on Country. Where previously Country was cared for, the new inhabitants valued what could be used for commercial purposes and disregarded or decimated the rest. The Museum’s cabinets hold new objects brought into the space by Darkson, his family and members of the Community; objects carved using materials collected from the living collection of the Adelaide Botanic Garden are displayed in the gallery. These objects asset the traditional uses for native plants and trees and are presented alongside collaged photographs sourced from archival imagery of the Botanic Gardens which date back 130 years. Darkson’s images highlight the gaps in the record: where stories have been ignored, and the plants and trees that supported people that have been overlooked. Ruled Us, Ruled Us, Ruled Us is a collaborative act of resistance, it introduces First Nations voices and cultural practices into an institution which has traditionally only viewed plants through a Western lens.