How are memories and trauma passed down, along with culture and tradition, to each generation? Bloodlines addresses the unacknowledged history and experiences of women taken as indentured labourers from South India to South Africa. These women’s stories are not generally known, as the history of this time was told primarily by the white male coloniser and therefore accurate and high quality records are scarce. Bloodlines will bring a voice to harrowing and hidden experiences; tricked onto vessels, often raped and abused on board and ill- treated on the sugar cane plantations they were sent to. Bloodlines remembers these women. Through intergenerational trauma, shame of the violence enacted upon these women and their loss of culture, many of these stories are lost. This project collates these disappearing oral histories with historical information, especially that of Simpson’s own matrilineal heritage, exploring and sharing them through large-scale Indian Miniature paintings, sound, video and prose. By immortalising these stories through traditional forms that historically used to tell religious or culture stories these interwoven narratives will be given their own place in history.



OPENING & PERFORMANCE / 5 September 2018, 6pm

EXHIBITION / 5 – 22 September 2018, Metro Arts Gallery Level 2

5 September
6-8pm /
Opening, with Welcome to Country
6.30pm / Performance – Ritual with Sancintya Mohini Simpson, Isha Ram Das, Indarami Simpson (Healing, cleansing sound performance)

15 September
2pm /
 Artist Talk with Sancintya Mohini Simpson and artist and curator Shivanjani Lal. Auslan interpretation available on request.
3pm / Healing Through Writing Workshop, facilitated by poet Mindy Gill with Sancintya Mohini Simpson.

19 September
6-8pm / 
Panel Discussion: How Can We Heal?
Sancintya Mohini Simpson, Chantal Fraser, Eric Bridgeman, Katina Davidson, & Léuli Eshrāghi engage in cross-cultural conversation about attempting to heal as a community from intergenerational trauma, loss of culture and ongoing impacts of colonisation. Auslan interpretation available on request.


Exhibition Catalogue

2018 / Metro Arts – Exhibition Program, presented by Metro Arts and Sancintya Mohini Simpson


Bloodlines was commissioned and developed through Next Wave’s Kickstart Helix program for Next Wave Festival 2018.

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.

This project is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland.

The Creative Sparks Fund is a partnership between the Queensland Government and Brisbane City Council to support local arts and culture in Brisbane.

Images by Savannah van der Niet, 2018.



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