Ernie Dingo

Ernie Dingo was born the second of nine children in 1956 in Mullewa, in the Geraldton region of Western Australia. Ernie has two children, Wilara and Jurra with his wife, author Sally Dingo.
Ernie dingo was a great Basketball player and he moved to Perth when he was 17 to play for the State basketball team in 1973 and 1977. Ernie’s performing career started when he joined the Middar Aboriginal Dance Theatre in 1978.Ernie then started acting on the stage with roles in plays such as The Dreamers and Kullark by Western Australian Aboriginal playwright Jack Davis. He was also a stand up comedian.

Ernies first television break-out performance was in Tudawali as one of Australia’s first Aboriginal screen actors, Robert Tudawali.

Ernie Stared in these movies:

  • The Cowra Breakout, Dirtwater Dynasty
  • Clowning Around and A Waltz Through the Hills
  • Dead Heart, The Fringe Dwellers
  • Crocodile Dundee II, Until the End of the World,
  • Blackfellas and Mr Electric

Ernie stared in these Television shows:

  • Fast Forward
  • Heartbreak High, Heartland
  • The World Around Us, The Great Outdoors.

Ernie has won Order of Australia, which he received in 1990. In 1997 The National Trust named Ernie as one of Australia’s National Living Treasures. Ernie Has taught many Australians about Aboriginal Australia.





Cathy Freeman

Catherine (Cathy) Freeman was born in Mackay in Queensland. . Cathy Freeman’s family was poor and her family was teased by white Australians because she was Aboriginal. Her family worked to raise the money Cathy needed to take her to athletic competitions in Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne. Her family moved to Brisbane in 1989 to live near Cathy, who had won a scholarship to Kooralbyn International School where she was being professionally coached by Mike Danila. Until n 1990 Cathy moved to Melbourne.

Cathy has won gold medals in these events:

Commonwealth Games:

  • 1990 New Zealand- gold medal as a member of the 4 x 100 metres relay team. She became the first female Australian Aboriginal to win a gold medal at an international athletics event.
  • 1994 Canada- Gold medal in 200 metres and the 400 metres. After her first win, Cathy ran a lap of honour carrying the Aboriginal flag and the Australian flag.

World Athletic Champonship:

  • 1997 Athens- won the 400 metres sprint.
  • 1999 Spain- won the 400 metres sprint.

Olympic Games:

  • 1996 Atlanta- Won silver medal in 400 metres sprint.
  • 2000 Sydney- Won gold medal in 400 metres sprint.

On 15 July 2003 Cathy Freeman announced her retirement from competitive running.
On 15 March 2006, she was one of the final runners in the Queen’s Baton Relay, bringing the baton into the MCG at the Opening Ceremony of the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

Nova Peris-Kneebone

Nova Maree Peris-Kneebone, was born February 25 1971 in the town of Darwin in the Northern Territory . Is an Aboriginal Australian Athelete. She was a player in the Australian Women’s Hockey team at the 1996 Olympics . Which made her the first aboriginal Australian to win an Olympic gold medal.In 1997, she changed sports to athletics. In a years time she won 2 gold medals in the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia winning the 200m sprint and also won the 4×100 metres relay.

She ran the 200m sprint in the 1999 world athletics championships and the 400 metres at the Sydney Olympics in 2000. She made the Olympic semi-finals in her single event and ran for the Australian 4×400 metres relay team, which finished fifth.

In 2000, a portrait of her was hung in the Archibald Prize, painted by Glenda Jones.

Nova Peris Kneebone had divorced before marrying young Australian track athlete Daniel Batman.

Namatjira, Albert (1902 – 1959 )

Albert Namatjira was the first professional aboriginal artist to paint in a western style. He mainly painted his country. He made around 2000 pictures and he also founded a art school which countinues to run.

Namatjira, who is an Arrernte man which is located near Alice Springs in central Australia, was born on 28th July 1902 near Ntaria about 120 kilometres from Alice Springs. Artist Rex Battarbee first taught him the techniques of watercolour painting. In 1936 Rex took Albert on an 8 week tour to teach him more painting techniques.

Namatjira’s first art exhibition of his 41 artworks was held in Melbourne in 1938. All works sold quickly. Over the next ten years he had many exhibitions which were held in capital cities of Australia which made Albert become a celebrity.

Awards & Significant Events

  • Queen’s Coronation medal in 1953.
  • He was flown to Canberra to meet the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh in 1954.
  • His portrait, by William Dargie, won the Archibald prize in 1956 and in 1957
  • He was allowed citizenship which was denied to most indigenous Australians ant that time.

He died on the 8th of August 1959

©Group 3    9.1/9.2    2008


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