Designs from local artists depicting the six Noongar seasons will soon go on display banners in the main street of Manjimup as a nod to its cultural heritage and educate the wider community. Giblett Street will be adorned from September with Aboriginal artwork on fixed street banner frames portraying the six seasons in the Karri Karrak area of the Noongar Nation — Birak, Bunuru, Djeran, Makuru, Djilba and Kambarang. Shire of Manjimup libraries and cultural services manager Vanda Dei-Tos said the artwork would tell the story of the seasonal changes and their impact on the lives of local Aboriginal people. “The Noongar Seasons project will offer locals and visitors the chance to increase their understanding, knowledge and appreciation of one of the oldest cultures on earth,” she said. Local Noongar artists had the opportunity to put forward a submission as part of a Shire of Manjimup art exhibition — supported through the Australian Government’s Indigenous Visual Arts Industry Support program — called Noongar Seasons: Nature in Transition. Six of the 18 artworks submitted will be selected in the coming weeks. Ms Dei-Tos said the idea for the project came from local Elder and Traditional Owner Suzanne Kelly, one of the members of the Shire’s Reconciliation Action Plan Advisory Committee which was established following the Shire’s ratification of its Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan May last year. “One of the key actions of the plan is to increase understanding, value and recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, histories, knowledge and rights through cultural learning,” she said. “It invites the preparation of new work by Noongar Artists on a theme that will resonate with members of the community and visitors of all ages while supporting Aboriginal cultural maintenance. “This project proposal represents a strong cultural investment in our regional community and will provide a platform for cultural expression for Noongar artists while helping the broader community better understand and connect with the region’s Aboriginal culture and heritage.” Ms Kelly said the project was a way of showcasing the incredible talent of Noongar artists to the people of the Manjimup shire and beyond while increasing non-Aboriginal peoples’ understanding of the Aboriginal way of life. “The artworks which have been submitted are all fantastic pieces allowing the artists to show their own interpretations of Nature in Transition in the Shire,” she said. “In this exhibition the six Noongar seasons are highlighted because most non-Aboriginal people do have an understanding of what the six seasons are and will be able to recognise a season in each artwork.” Ms Kelly said it would be the first time any Noongar art would be viewed in a public place in the town. “Projects like this give a sense of pride to the artists by being given the opportunity to exhibit their works. “It’s a great chance to educate people about Noongar culture and to see the different artistic style of each artist.” The banners are expected to be on display in Giblett Street from mid-September 2023 until June 2024.