Mel is a proud Awabakal woman of the Wonnarua nation with ties to the Githabul Bundjalung people and has been living and working on Bundjalung Country for the past 15 years. "My practice represents the multi-layered history of our people and our intrinsic connection to country. I have been caring for country for most of my life and have a reciprocal relationship with the land. This practice has brought me closer to the heart of our ancient land and shares old stories & wisdom. Ochres are living, sentient beings, filled with energy & spirit and hold a knowing that is learned over deep time. I acknowledge and honour the connection that my people and all traditional owners have to this ancient medium. I respect & understand that each different nation/clan group has its own history, traditional cultural practices, protocols and spiritual beliefs to ochres. These ochre stories are the palette of my cultural expression and I hope they can evoke and resonate with your own connection to country and how you walk upon it".