Mackay shines spotlight on new generation of First Nations artists  

[supplied by DATSIP]


Kynan Sanderson. Image: supplied

Throughout November, Mackay’s NAIDOC Youth Art Exhibition is showcasing the art and achievements of local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people aged 12-24 years.

Many of the young artists are sharing their artwork publicly for the first time. 


It is the start of a journey for these talented young Queenslanders, to proudly express their culture through art and access further opportunities. 


17-year-old Aboriginal and South Sea Islander artist and Mackay North State High School student, Kynan Sanderson, is among the young artists showcasing their work.


Kynan’s unique street-style, inspired by basketball, music, sneakers, fashion and anime mixes urban culture with hard-hitting topics including environment and pollution.


“As an aspiring young Indigenous artist, having the opportunity to share my passion for art and aesthetic with the community in the NAIDOC youth art exhibition is very important to me and I am very grateful for it,” he said.


DATSIP Mackay Manager Rhiannon Minniecon said her team was proud to support the initiative opening opportunities for local young people to thrive.


“The exhibit has built a sense of pride among young people in our community,” Ms Minniecon said. 

“We are now working to take this wonderful exhibit on the road to share it with the wider community and give these talented young people more exposure across the Mackay, Isaac and Whitsundays region,” she said.


For enquiries about hosting the exhibit, or purchasing artwork pieces, contact the Mackay DATSIP Office at  or on (07) 4862 7001.


The NAIDOC Youth Art Exhibition at Mackay’s Jubilee Community Centre is open to the public and runs to 30 November 2020.


Other featured artists include:

Jermaine Blackaby
19-year-old Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artist born in Mackay with artwork inspired by the stingray totem of his mother’s family from the Torres Strait Islands.

Kasey George
17-year-old Aboriginal artist originally from Mount Isa/Normanton area, now lives in Mackay with his Mum and three younger siblings and his creations include artwork on furniture. 


Yvonne Emery–Gesah
17-year-old Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, South Sea Islander artist and aspiring business owner who is proud of her culture and the art she creates.

Ernestine Hankin
Young Torres Strait Islander artist with family connection to Mer and Iama Islands in the Torres Strait, and the youngest exhibiter at just 12 years old, enjoys using her imagination to tell stories through abstract art.

Denzel Row Row
18-year-old Iman and Kullilli man born in Mackay and raised in Blackwater who is skilled in traditional and modern-style art.


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