Clair Bates, Tina Doolin, Ellen Trevorrow, Samantha Doolin, Charlie Davis, Jennifer Bates, Glenda Nicholls, Bronwyn Razem, Debra Rankine, Jelina Haines, Alice Abdulla, Anne McMahon, Weaving Stories (Murray River), Collaborative mixed media installation. Photo: Fleur Ruddick

Woven fishnets by Murray Darling Dreamtime Weavers Clair Bates, Tina Doolan, Samantha Doolan & Jennifer Bates. Photo: Danielle Hanifin

Clair Bates is a direct descendant of the Maliangappa/ Paakantji people of the Darling River people Wilcannia, New South Wales. She comes from a very large Aboriginal family and a strong Aboriginal community group that resides in both Wilcannia, Broken Hill and throughout the Western New South Wales area. Clair grew up in Wilcannia on the “Mission” which was a settlement that was created to separate Aboriginal people from the White community where she still has strong family and community ties. She lived in Newcastle from 1967 to 1994 then lived in Sydney before moving to Wentworth in 2011. Clair’s art practice generally explores the stories of both her clan groups from the Maliangappa and Paakantji tribes. Bates is a Master Weaver and has been teaching weaving across Victoria and New South Wales.

Clair Bates, Woven basket, 2014 , Mixed media. Photograph: Fleur Ruddick.

Murray Darling Dreamtime Weavers Master Weaver, Clair Bates