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Tuesday 11 December 2018

An Aussie odyssey

Artist and author Ruth Allen
Artist and author Ruth Allen
Artwork from the book
Artwork from the book
Artwork from the book

Anna Hayes

A local writer is exploring the myths and traditions of the Australian Aboriginal culture in a new book that will be launched later this month.

'Mimi', by Ruth Allen, features artwork and stories from the indigenous Australian culture, including Dreamtime and Walkabout stories which play an integral part in the community's beliefs. 'Mimi', she explained, is the Aboriginal equivalent of the Irish Tuatha Dé Danann.

'The book focuses on the positives of the Aboriginal tradition - the kinship and community. It's an attempt to understand them as a community, explore their icons and meanings, many of which are universal and are relevant today.'

Ruth, originally from Dublin, has been living in Wexford for the past 15 years. Her mother was a Parle from Tacumshane and so she spent every second summer in Wexford. Now, she works as a therapist and dream analyst; she is also an artist and a poet with the Selskar Writer's Group.

Indeed, the catalyst for the book came through painting.

She explained that in January 2016, all of her grandchildren at the time were living in Australia and she became inspired to paint, exploring the Aboriginal story and style. Her daughter still lives in Brisbane and she has visited Australia on numerous occasions.

'It was the start of a journey and I researched the culture along the way, though I found it very difficult to find accounts of the culture that weren't from the settlers' point of view.'

The book will be launched on Saturday, November 24, at 2 p.m. in Wexford Book Centre.

Wexford People

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