A chance encounter at a Healesville art gallery has led to a south-west Indigenous artist's works being featured on homewares products sold nationally at Myer.
Warrnambool's Emma Stenhouse said the release of the Emma Stenhouse x Vue range, in Myer stores and online this week, was one of her proudest moments so far.
She said she was proud to be able to highlight the beauty of the country's Indigenous artwork, in a way that honoured Indigenous iconography and culture.
Stenhouse said it was the biggest range of products featuring Indigenous art that Myer had ever done and included wall art, towels, linen, kitchenware and candles.
She travelled to Myer's Geelong store on Wednesday to see the range in person and said she couldn't believe it. Initial feedback has been "extremely positive" and the range features three images, each one telling a different story, included on the packaging.
"Each piece with Myer has a story attached to it and to me that's just as important as the artwork itself," Stenhouse said. "That people are recognising that Indigenous art is our way of telling a story.
"For many years and historically, Indigenous people weren't allowed to write down their stories or their culture so it's been shared through artwork."
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She said a lot of people connected with the story, while for others pieces caught their eye. "They can share and they know what the story means. I think that's why people are so connecting with my art because they're understanding where it comes from."
She said the collaboration was done with the blessings and support of her Ngarrindjeri Elders, her grandmother's country on the lower lakes of the Murray River, and the Peek Whurrong Elders.
She said it was a 12 month process and came about after a Myer manager visited an Indigenous art gallery.
"They talked about how our desert artists have been internationally recognised and that it would be nice to have a local connection from Victoria. He asked if she knew of anyone, she showed him my work and the rest is kind of history."
Stenhouse can't believe she painted them in the family kitchen and now "everyone knows that story".
"Everybody can see it, they can read it and understand our icons. It's pretty special but I don't think it's really sunk in yet either," she said.
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