A group of Indigenous delegates who traveled to Belgium staged a spectacular parade for guests from the Australian Embassy in Belgium, Luxembourg, the EU and NATO.
On Tuesday May 17, Amanda Healy from Kirrkin and Liandra Gaykamangu from Liandra Swim presented their collections to guests of the Brussels Museum of Art and History.
Denni Francisco from Ngali and Julie Shaw from MAARA Collective also sent pieces to show.
The show was organized as a combined effort by Healy and the Australian Embassy in Belgium, Luxembourg and the Mission to the EU and NATO.
Opening with a Welcome to Country from Gaykamangu and Healy, was followed by a performance by Yidaki (didgeridoo) player and Noongar man, Jack Collard.
Model and wife of Noongar Shannon McGuire opened and closed the show in iconic pieces from Liandra Swim and Kirrikin.
Indigenous models Cassie Puruntatameri and Haylee McLean also traveled from Australia to walk the catwalk in Brussels.
Ms McLean said she was delighted to be hitting her very first track in Europe.
“I feel so good, it went so well and I’m so happy,” she said.
“It was my very first show and what a way to do it in Europe.”
Founder and designer of Ngali, Francisco said she was thrilled to be able to share Ngali on the world stage.
“Part of the ‘why’ of creating Ngali was to help celebrate and share our First Nations culture,” she said.
“We want to partner with our First Nations artists to take stunning artwork beyond wall display and march it to streets all over the world.
“Showing in Belgium helps us achieve this vision.”
Healy said showing Indigenous fashion on a European runway had a huge impact.
“Just to see how it’s received, in the conversations that ensue, where does it lead, the potential and the possibility,” she said.
“And to see our people, our crowd here, standing proudly, tall and in one of the greatest cities in Europe.
“We’re definitely starting to see people’s interest in us and breaking down barriers and opening doors, so that’s really exciting.
“There really are endless possibilities here. In Europe, they seem to understand the aesthetics very well and understand the stories that led to where we are.
Indigenous delegates will continue to travel across Europe showcasing their talents over the coming weeks.