an NFSA website

Brisbane Dreaming (1994)


This documentary is about the original Indigenous custodians of the Brisbane area.

Curator’s notes

This well-researched documentary uses historical footage and re-enactments to tell the story of the Indigenous peoples of the Brisbane area. With a well-weighted script, it manages to depict the intimacy with which Indigenous peoples lived in connection with the land and draws on colonial accounts from historical documents without disempowering or demoralising the Indigenous position. The filmmakers weave throughout many different schools of thought – archaeological, anthropological, Indigenous cultural and cosmological views – in order to present Brisbane as a myriad of complex relationships formed by different beliefs and experiences. The filmmakers ask us to 'look around, feel the presence’ that makes up modern-day Brisbane.