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Sam Watson by Zhi Peng (Jack) Wu

Sam Watson

by Zhi Peng (Jack) Wu

About the artist

Having studied in China, Wu Zhipeng has a deep understanding of traditional Chinese painting techniques. In the late 1980s Wu Zhipeng moved to Australia, where his artistic practice developed, as he was exposed to more diversity of styles. Wu Zhipeng was selected for a Cultural Champion Award, also participated in an exhibition at Brisbane City Hall. He has also been a finalist in Shirley Hannan National Portrait Award.

About the sitter

Sam Watson was born and raised in Brisbane. He is of the Munnenjarl and Biri Gubba tribal nations and he has blood ties to the Jagara, Kalkadoon and Noonuccal peoples. As a student he was active in many political campaigns, and helped set up the first major Indigenous community service organisations in Brisbane. He had success as a writer, with his novel, The Kadaitcha Sung, winning the National Indigenous Writer of the Year Award. In the early 1990s Sam became involved with the State and Federal Indigenous legal services. He remained a political activist, contesting elections at both State and Federal levels. In 1994 Sam wrote and co-produced his first film, Black Man Down. He has consistently fought for a Treaty between the Australian government and Indigenous people.He is the Deputy Director of the Aboriginal and Islander Studies Unit at the University of Queensland, where he teaches courses in Black Australian Literature and Black Australian Politics.