A two-day workshop exploring Indigenous Australian mourning rituals through the making of Kopi mourning caps.

The ritual and ceremony of mourning can be both public and private expressions of loss, sadness and reflection. With the loss of another, we celebrate the life they lived and the experiences that we shared. The way we mourn determines the way we heal.

The Kopi mourning cap represents loss, sorrow and grief. Indigenous women would cut off their hair, weave a net of emu sinew and place the sinew on their head. They would then cover it with several layers of gypsum, a white river clay, forming the Kopi, which could weigh up to 7kg.

This practice has not occurred in South Eastern Australia for many years, so with the help of Indigenous men and women, Maree Clarke has revived it. In her practice, she works to revive elements of Indigenous culture that were lost in the period of colonisation, such as loss of land, language and cultural practices

In this two day workshop, participants will be guided through a process of making Kopi mourning caps to support a deepened understanding of Indigenous culture and the connections between arts and emotional well-being.

Participants should expect the following outcomes:
• Strengthen cultural competencies and capacity to work effectively in cross-cultural contexts
• Develop an understanding of the application of art for well being through experiential engagement in a process of art for healing
• Integrate understanding of grief, loss and inter-generational trauma
• Produce their own Kopi

In partnership with Menzies Institute at King’s College London; The University of Melbourne.

Please note: This is two-day workshop. Participants must commit to both days.