Heather Marie Koowootha
Born: 1966, Cairns, Far Nth Qld
Clan/Clan Group: Wik Mungkan, Djabuguy/Yidinji
Heather grew up in Yarrabah to where her mother, from the Yidinji people, was taken at a young age and placed in a dormitory with other ‘stolen’ aboriginal children. Her father comes from Pormpuraaw. His mother lived in Aurukun and returned to Pormpuraaw to give birth to him on traditional country.
Heather’s father comes from the Wik Mungkan people and at 12 years of age was taken from his mother in Aurukun to Normanton Mission where he worked as a stockman. The family travelled to Weipa with their father for work. Growing up Heather visited Aurukun for family holidays.
Heather’s teachings have come from both her mother and father’s culture. Her parents met in Yarrabah. She has four surviving siblings out of ten. Heather has two kids and one beautiful grandson.
She developed a love for art in primary school and only in the past year has she had the opportunity to seriously devote more time to art and learning new skills at Canopy Art Centre, Cairns.
Her works are inspired by stories and experiences growing up and her print works in particular portray detailed drawings based on lore and order, sacred land protocols, bush medicine, bush classroom, bush food, cultural punishments, and other themes based on community life, history and culture.
Heather works in a range of mediums such as painting, drawing, printmaking, jewellery, and weaving. Heather is also interested in listening to stories that inform her work.