Press & Media – Saretta Art & Design

Press & Media

Aboriginal artist Saretta Fielding’s sandpit studio April 17 2017


When Aboriginal artist Saretta Fielding is painting, eight hours can feel like just one: Time stands still, or it’s not relevant at all. 

“I feel like when I’m painting, I’m in the sandpit just playing… it’s something I love to do,” Saretta says.

“Playing in the sand” is a telling metaphor: Saretta uses her own self-taught, sand-based techniques to create highly textured, three-dimensional artworks that embody the age-old sandstone artworks made by her ancestors.

See the full story and episode here


Work of Toronto artist Saretta Fielding earns national acclaim July 18 2016

Lakes Mail 18 July 2016

MAJOR AWARD: Toronto artist Saretta Fielding, left, and NSW Minister for Indigenous Affairs Leslie Williams with her winning piece Konara Clan. The win continues a run of success for the artist.

Saretta Fielding always had a passion for art.

But it has only been in recent years that the Toronto 51-year-old has pursued a career as an artist.

It started several years ago, when she was invited to create artworks for a local bush tucker exhibition at Honeysuckle.

Her pieces proved popular and having them appreciated by members of the community “reignited that dream and passion”. 

“It just grew from there,” Ms Fielding said.

She now has pieces spread throughout John Hunter Hospital, including captivating wall-sized murals, and in 2014 earned global recognition when she won a design competition for Ray Ban glasses.

Last week Ms Fielding had the honour of claiming a prestigious indigenous art prize at NSW Parliament House.

Ms Fielding was one of 20 finalists invited to Parliament  last Thursday, when she was named the major prize winner of the exhibition Our Communities.

“I’m still abuzz from winning, it just blew me away,” she said. “It was fantastic to be selected and then to go down and see where the work hung in the beautiful space at Parliament House. I’m so proud.”

Ms Fielding’s painting Konara Clan, which was created by a mixture of sand and acrylic paint on canvas, trumped submissions nationwide.

Family has always been the focal point of her art, and it was no different for her competition-winning submission.

“Family is number one to me, and Konara Clan is close to my heart,” Ms Fielding said. 

“It’s about my family connections and the seasons of life together.

“It shows the patchwork woven quilt affect, where we all go off on our own journey but we always intersect.”

The now full-time artist is passionate about promoting the richness and diversity of her culture through art, and believes support for indigenous Australian communities is vital for reconciliation.

“My father is Aboriginal and my mother isn’t, so identity and reconciliation was something that was important to me from a young age,” she said. 

“For me this is about celebrating our culture and inviting the wider community to be a part of that with us.

“When that happens it really allows people to take that journey together and have a greater understanding across cultures.”

Ms Fielding turned full-time artist at the start of this year and opens Ninkinpa Studio at her Toronto home on Fridays and Saturdays each week.

The National Indigenous Art Exhibition is on at NSW Parliament Fountain Court Gallery until July 22.

Read full Lakes Mail article

Norton Rose Fulbright Exhibition June 23 2016

Saretta is one of ten Artist selected nationally to exhibit at the Norton Rose Fulbright Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art & Music exhibition held tonight in Sydney.

Leading into NAIDOC celebrations, Saretta’s artworks will hang beside those of her younger brother Damian Smith, former principal of the San Francisco Ballet and world renowned dancer, who was also one of the standout artist selected for this wonderful opportunity.

The talented siblings exhibited together for the first time in their home town of Toronto at Ninkinpa Gallery, on Friday 10 June with the story covered by ABC radio and television. In Australia for another week before returning to the States, Smith flew into the country last month to dance with the Australian Ballets production ‘Symphony in C’ at the Sydney Opera House.


2016 NAIDOC Week June 22 2016

NAIDOC week will see Saretta celebrating with community and setting up Pop Up Galleries across the Hunter at major NAIDOC events, including Newcastle Foreshore on Monday 4 July, Westlakes Foreshore, Toronto Tuesday 5 July and at Worimi Local Aboriginal Land Council in Port Stephens on Friday 8 July.

In additional Saretta will also be participating in NAIDOC programs at Regional Galleries in the Hunter, including Artist Forum at the Cessnock Regional Art Gallery 6pm on Thursday 30 June and feature Artist at the Newcastle Art Gallery Children’s Program on 9 July from 10.30 – 12.30 and then on 6 August from 2 – 3pm, presenting a gallery talk on her art practice and experience – All Welcomed.

Artwork selected to promote the ‘Our Communities’ Indigenous Art Exhibition, now showing at NSW PARLIAMENT HOUSE. June 21 2016

The ‘Our Communities’ - National Indigenous Art Exhibition presented by MAX Employment will showcase 20 National Indigenous Artist in Parliament House from- 15 June to 22 July 2016.

The exhibition highlights the talent of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists from around the country, honouring the culture, skill and diversity of the original owners of this land. Selected as a finalist in 2015 and 2016, Saretta’s artwork was this year chosen to promote the exhibition on the NSW Parliament website.

You can check out Saretta’s work and all twenty incredible finalist artworks at NSW Parliament Fountain Court Gallery – free entry over the following weeks.

The Actor, Deputy Lord Mayor, Academics & Students in Newcastle May 26 2016

From the Aboriginal Art Directory website

Reconciliation Week starts this coming Friday, 27 May 2016, and the Newcastle Art Gallery (NAG) are running BLACK WHITE & RESTIVE which celebrates the work of over 60 artists and their cross-cultural art practices. It will be opened by the Deputy Lord Mayor of Newcastle, Councillor Jason Dunn, with guest speaker, Trevor Jamieson, acclaimed Australian actor.

The exhibition’s narrative begins with Albert Namatjira and Rex Battarbee’s creative exchange from the 1930s and surveys key works from the 1990s until 2015, including five large-scale collaborations. BLACK WHITE & RESTIVE also draws on Newcastle Art Gallery’s collection of works by Gordon Bennett, Imants Tillers, Tim Johnson, Ildiko Kovacs, Danie Mellor, Margaret Preston and Tony Tuckson as well as the Gallery’s significant holdings of Hermannsburg watercolours.

A community art project by the same name was also developed in response to BLACK WHITE & RESTIVE and is on now. This explores concepts of belonging, identity and place and brings together cross-cultural collaborations with artists, Newcastle Art Gallery staff, and students from around Newcastle and the Hunter region. It aims to teach both young and older artists to broaden their experience of contemporary Indigenous art, local culture and heritage - and also to encourage a visit the Gallery! The final works created during a series of workshops will be assembled and placed on display in the Gallery’s SMART SPACE for visitors to experience. Four local artists, Saretta Fielding (Wonaruah) and UP&UP team (Shane Kennedy, Faith Curtis and Brad Russell) led the project.



Indigenous students learn "deadly skills" at Hunter TAFE Kurri Kurri May 20 2016

From the Newcastle Herald, 11 May 2016.

INDIGENOUS students from Hunter schools have gathered at TAFE’s Kurri Kurri campus for an event that empowers Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth to pursue higher education.

More than 170 indigenous students in years 10 to 12 attended the second annual Deadly Skills – It’s Your Future, Claim It event, which is a collaboration between Hunter TAFE, the Newcastle Knights and the Aboriginal Learning Circle (Hunter).

Students heard from Knights players Dane Gagai, Jaelen Feeney and Robbie Rochow, NRL ambassador George Rose, past and present Indigenous Women’s All Stars Players, Australian Jillaroos representatives Emma and Julie Young and Aboriginal artist Saretta Fielding.

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Les Elvin tribute exhibition opens at Cessnock Regional Art Gallery May 14 2016

Article from Cessnock Advertiser featuring photos from the opening of 'I wont be long' A tribute to Les Elvin exhibiting at Cessnock Regional Art Gallery until June 5.

An exhibition celebrating the life and art of one of Australia’s most prominent Indigenous painters, Les Elvin, opened at Cessnock Regional Art Gallery on April 23.

The award-winning Cessnock artist, known as ‘Uncle Les’, passed away in August 2015, aged 77.

As a proud descendant of the Wanaruah people of the Lower Hunter, Elvin received many awards in his lifetime, including National Artist of the Year at the NAIDOC Week Awards in 2008.

The exhibition – titled I Won’t Be Long: A Tribute to Les Elvin is centred on his magnificent four last works.

It also includes works by Elvin’s daughter Lesley Salem and grand-children Alex, Tamar and Tamika Elvin (who all are successful artists in their own right), and works by Saretta Fielding and Justin Ridgeway.

I Won’t Be Long: A Tribute to Les Elvin will run at Cessnock Regional Art Gallery until June 5.


Indigenous painting revealed in new Charlton College building - Lakes Mail October 20 2015

AWARD-WINNING local Aboriginal artist, Saretta Fielding, recently revealed her latest work at Charlton Christian College, at Fassifern.

The artwork titled Wupiliko Miringil Moroon, meaning "put ready for life" was commissioned by the K-to-12 school for the opening of its new administration building.

Full article

Ray-Ban Wayfarer design on AFL umpire uniforms June 27 2015

It was a real honor to be selected to have my design which won the Ray-Ban OneSight competition in 2014 transformed for the AFL Dreamtime Round Umpire uniforms. Here are a few media articles.


Another mention of the Ray-Ban Wayfarer design used for the AFL Umpire uniforms. It was a proud moment in my art career to see the design on national TV.

Posted by Saretta Art & Design on Saturday, 27 June 2015

Posted by Saretta Art & Design on Thursday, 28 May 2015


Check out the Sunrise crew talking about the Indigenous Ray-Ban.

Posted by Saretta Art & Design on Thursday, 28 May 2015


Very excited to share with you all my design which won the OPSM OneSight Ray-Ban competition is being used for the AFL...

Posted by Saretta Art & Design on Wednesday, 27 May 2015


Miromaa Facebook Post May 04 2015

We are proud to announce that we are displaying and selling the fantastic art and designed products of internationally...

Posted by Miromaa Aboriginal Language & Technology Centre on Sunday, May 3, 2015

Kayay Art Installation at Boulevard Family Practice Toronto NSW April 17 2015

I am very excited to share with you all an installation today of one of the first artworks I painted some years back, reproduced onto acrylic panels at the Boulevard Family Practice, 2nd Floor of the Alec Rice Medical Centre in my hometown of Toronto NSW.

Kayay – Move Along (Awabakal) The fish in the paintings represent my home, in Awabakal country, on the shores of beautiful Ninkinpa (Lake Macquarie) where time on the water and fishing are a way of life.

Please feel free to drop in and have a look.

Excited to be sharing with you more art installation at The Boulevarde Family Practice, Toronto. I have two full art...

Posted by Saretta Art & Design on Friday, 24 April 2015

Ray-Ban's Iconic Wayfarers Go Indigenous - MENSTYLEPOWER January 20 2015

Not-for-profit organisation – OneSight, in collaboration with Ray- Ban are thrilled to launch their exclusive Ray-Ban Indigenous Special Edition Wayfarer.

The iconic Wayfarer sunglasses, a wardrobe staple, is redeveloped in three designs featuring the Indigenous artwork of Saretta Fielding, and has officially launch in line with international World Sight Day.

Indigenous artist, Saretta Fielding, had her artwork announced as the winning design at Australian Indigenous Fashion Week in April, and we had the opportunity to interview her on her collaboration, her beginnings and her art.

To read article:    

OneSight Indigenous Ray-Ban Wayfarer Launch October 10 2014

On Thursday 9th October, it was my great pleasure to be invited to the launch of the Ray-Ban Wayfarer Indigenous glasses featuring my design.

The following is a video that was played on the night which provides you with history on OneSight and the competition. The video features Aden Ridgeway and Alison Page.



Samantha Harris's new Ray-Bans October 10 2014

They look good and come with a feelgood factor too – say hello to the new Ray-Ban Indigenous Wayfarer.

The sunglasses brand held a competition for emerging Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists to design new frames.

The project is a collaboration with OneSight, a charity that provides vision care worldwide.

Model Samantha Harris knew immediately she wanted to be involved.

“Not many people know this about me but I actually started wearing glasses at six years old – I really understand the importance of checking children’s eyes early, which is what OneSight is all about,” she told mX.

“I’m loving that Indigenous art and style is getting some of the attention it deserves, there’s so much Australia can gain ­culturally from it.”

Artist Saretta Fielding won the competition, and her design will feature across three colour schemes.

“There are so many talented designers and creatives throughout indigenous Australia that are coming through,” Harris said.

“Saretta Fielding makes great work so it’s exciting to see her get this recognition, having her work exposed to such a huge audience (will) be a massive break.”

The Indigenous Wayfarer will be available at selected ­Ray-Ban retailers for RRP $159.95, with $50 from each pair sold ­going to OneSight.


As appeared on the MX website

Saretta wins at Coal and Allied's 2014 Singleton Art Prize July 23 2014

(l-r) Deidre Heitmeyer, Saretta Fielding, Cate Sims and Brad Franks.

Thanks to the Coal and Allied’s Aboriginal Community Development Fund Newcastle Artist Saretta Fielding won $4000 when she took out the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander section at this year's Singleton Art Prize.

The category was introduced last year and her artwork titled 'Koyiyoong Campsite' caught the eye of judge Terry Jarvis.

He described her work as "a very mature painting involving a variety of textures, shapes, colours and movement that tell a story."

“It has a unique presence. That draws you to look to understand and discover the storyline. It makes a magnificent statement of purpose, history, future and present. Congratulations on a great story,” he said.

See full story here

Creative Hunter Siblings - Saretta Fielding & Damien Smith on ABC Newcastle Mornings May 07 2014

In May, on 1233 Mornings Jill invited Hunter siblings Saretta Fielding and Damien Smith to share the latest news in their creative journeys. Saretta has taken out a major design award and Damien is moving on after 16 years as Principle dancer with the San Francisco Ballet. Where next for this creative Indigenous family?

To listen to the interview please click here

OneSight Ray-Ban Indigenous Special Edition Wayfarer competition winner April 12 2014

Sydney, 11 April 2014: Not-for-profit organisation OneSight has announced the winner today of their Ray-Ban Indigenous Special Edition Wayfarer competition at Australian Indigenous Fashion Week. Indigenous artist Saretta Fielding’s winning artwork was selected from a panel of judges including Alison Page and Aden Ridgeway, and has won the opportunity to transform her artwork into a unique pair of Ray-Ban Indigenous Special Edition Wayfarers.

Winning Design: Saretta Fielding - Wakool, NSW Forestry Logo Winner – 2013 March 14 2014

Saretta Fielding from Lake Macquarie is the winner of the Forestry Corporation of NSW's (formerly Forests NSW) competition to develop a logo in acknowledgement and respect of management of the forests by Aboriginal people in the past, present and future.

Forestry Corporation's acting CEO, Nick Roberts, said the logo would be used by the corporation to acknowledge Aboriginal partnerships and its work with indigenous communities.“Ms Fielding embodied the spirit of the competition with her thought provoking artwork titled Wakool, which means "One" in Awabakal language,” he said.

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Taronga Zoo Wild Rhino National Competition – 2013 Winner February 15 2014

Taronga Wild! Rhinos is a Wild in Art event that will bring businesses, artists and schools together to create a spectacular world-class sculpture trail from the Sydney Harbour foreshore through the Blue Mountains to Dubbo and the Central West region of NSW.

From February – April 2014 a huge herd of wildly colourful rhino sculptures painted by artists will charge into town as part of a mass public art exhibition to help raise awareness and valuable funds for Taronga’s world leading Black Rhino breeding program. Saretta Fielding's 'Ngeyn Malang' - We Together: Awabakal design has been selected as the Taronga Zoo Wild National Competition 2013 winner.

This intricate, vibrant design is representative of Aboriginal song lines (also called dream tracks), showing trade routes, walking tracks and pilgrimage. Lines throughout the work connect to circles, which mean meeting places and coming together. The work relates to the rhino's journey for survival and the people who come together to fight to save it from extinction through valuable breeding and conservation programs.

Wild! for rhinos - Dubbo Liberal Daily News February 03 2014

ON MASS The Taronga Wild! Rhinos art trail was launched at the Opera House late last month. Gavin Hayton of Kennard Hire, Mayor Mathew Dickerson, Councillor John Walkhom, Taronga Western Plains Zoo general manager Matt Fuller and MP Troy Grant. Photo: Belinda Soole

The zoo’s Wild! Rhinos project created 125 rhino sculptures, which were then given unique paint jobs by professional artists as well as community groups and schools.
The life-sized statues, weighing more than 500 kilograms, will form a trail from Sydney to the central west before they go under the hammer at a Sydney auction in May. 

See the full story here

Rhinos stampede Opera House January 31 2014

The Sydney Opera House was subjected to a stampede of 17 very colourful life-size sculptures of endangered Black Rhinos on Friday morning.

The sculptures form part of Taronga Zoo's herd of 125 Rhinos decorated by leading artists and designers including Ken Done and Camilla Frank, and NSW school students.

The installation of the whole herd on the Taronga Wild! Rhino trail will wind its way throughout Sydney, through regional NSW, and finishing at Taronga Western Plains Zoo in Dubbo from February 2 until April 28.

See full story and slideshow on