Collaboration in action: presenting SSE’s visual brand, Abundance
Showcasing the talent and depth of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander entrepreneurs from diverse business sectors – and sowing the seeds of entrepreneurship in others – is fundamental to SSE’s mission.
We believe in the transformative impact of sharing information, wisdom, and knowledge between people and networks; we respectfully acknowledge that our work takes place in the footsteps of this nation’s original entrepreneurs, storytellers, innovators, and placemakers; and we celebrate First Nations people’s traditional sovereignty of the lands and waterways of Australia, which has never been ceded.
Translating SSE’s mission into a visual brand
SSE recently partnered with Aboriginal creative agency Mumbulla Creative – founded by Kaurna and Narungga woman Charmaine Mumbulla and her husband Jason Mumbulla, a Gumbaynggirr man from Nambucca Heads – to create a visual brand that represents our partnerships, service, and impact, as well as our future direction.
The creative process began with a workshop with SSE HQ in Ultimo (NSW), conversations which then formed the basis of the artwork brief and gave the Mumbullas an opportunity to learn more about us and our organisation.
“Aboriginal people are storytellers, and we tell stories not just through yarns, or dance, or music, but we tell stories through art, [so] we were honoured to be approached by SSE to work with them on a bespoke artwork,” Charmaine explained.
Charmaine Mumbulla, the power of storytelling through art
Charmaine's family are from Point Pearce on South Australia’s Yorke Peninsula. Her family was heavily impacted by Stolen Generation policies and her mother used artwork to share her own story of removal.
Not surprisingly, Charmaine grew up with a passion for social justice and an understanding of the power of storytelling through art. In 2019 she won the NAIDOC Week poster competition for her entry that depicted the theme Voice, Treaty, Truth, and as a values-driven artist, she is passionate about working on projects that support better outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities.
Abundance: purpose, wisdom, and knowledge
The result, for SSE, is a visually stunning and emotive digital artwork named Abundance.
At the heart of the artwork a large circle represents SSE. This is surrounded by smaller interconnected circles symbolising the transformative impact of sharing that wisdom and knowledge between people and networks. Nearby a scattering of vibrant starbursts reminds us that entrepreneurship is a powerful catalyst for change, and seedlings represent growth. Four large U-symbols enclose the circles representing people coming together to share ideas in reciprocity.
A line of connected circles to the right of the canvas represents different communities transformed by self-empowerment and self-determination, while continuing to share information and resources. Smaller individual circles on the canvas represent SSE’s partners, cultural mentors, and facilitators.
Throughout the artwork organic lines and shapes are inspired by the many natural forms across Australia, including small details like emu tracks and ripples from fish jumping in the water.
“My favourite part of the artwork are the two weaving lines – a river and a walking track – that symbolise the original communication and trade routes that traverse the nation, bringing people together in business, culture, and ceremony,” said Charmaine.
“It was wonderful to work with SSE on the artwork,” she added. “This year has been challenging for many Aboriginal people with the referendum result, so we were fortunate to be working with such a supportive client through this time.”
What does Charmaine think about when she’s creating, we asked?
“Artistic expression is an important part of Aboriginal culture, from the earliest rock engravings to the wide-ranging contemporary art of today. When I’m creating digital art, I often reflect on how my ancestors could never have imagined stories being told through art created on a computer!”
Visit Mumbulla Creative online to connect with Charmaine or Jason today.