Reko Rennie: Recent works

By Oliver Ramsay

This article is part of our June theme, which focuses on Indigenous People and their human rights. Read our Editorial for more on this theme.

Reko Rennie is a Kamilaroi/Gamilaraay/Gummaroi man, born in Melbourne, Australia. He received no formal artistic training but as a young man discovered graffiti, which would become an all consuming passion.

Rennie combines the iconography from his aboriginal heritage with stylistic elements of graffiti and street art, making for a powerful composition. The diamond pattern that features throughout his work is one of four male and four female symbols used to symbolise the four marriage classes within the divided moieties of the Kamilaroi people.

Rennie’s work explores what it means to be an urban aboriginal living in contemporary Australia. Subsequently, his work explores many of the issues facing Aboriginals today like identity, race, law and justice, land rights as well as the stolen generation.

In 2011 Rennie was commissioned by the City of Melbourne to have his work included in the Laneway Commission. Neon Natives is now on display in Cocker Alley off Flinders Lane. Rennie’s work has also seen the walls of Paris, Shanghai and Washington.

It’s a privilege to have Rennie’s work featured this month during our focus on Indigenous People.

Neon Natives – Melbourne Laneway Commission 2011

Neon Natives – Melbourne Laneway Commission 2011

Remember Me – The Original People – Washington 2012

Remember Me – The Original People – Washington 2012

Collaboration with Frank Buffalo Hyde – The Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, Santa Fe, USA 2012

Scope Art Fair NY – 2012

Art Gallery of NSW Installation 2011

Black Magic – Sydney 2011

Black Magic – Sydney 2011

Gallery Salihara installation and collaboration with Jakarta artist Bujangan Urban, 2011

Gallery Salihara installation and collaboration with Jakarta artist Bujangan Urban, 2011

 

Images have been provided courtesy of Reko Rennie from his website.

Latest

Review – Renewal: Five Paths to a Fairer Australia

By Georgia Cerni

Sophie Cousins’ book Renewal: Five Paths to a Fairer Australia is, in many respects, a proposal. For Cousins, the COVID-19 pandemic has provided Australians with an opportunity to reconsider the ways our society currently functions. Cousins aptly makes her case – while in some ways the pandemic reinforced burgeoning inequalities, it also presented us the chance to apply collectivist values to solve systemic problems.