Volleyball Australia presents Indigenous-inspired design to be featured on National Team uniforms

Volleyball Australia presents Indigenous-inspired design to be featured on National Team uniforms

Volleyball Australia (VA) is proud to announce that a new Indigenous-inspired artwork created by two-time Olympian and Indigenous artist Brad Hore will become part of the Australian National Team uniform design, and will appear on all uniforms worn by senior Volleyball Australia teams for beach and indoor volleyball.

The Wambuyn Mulumun (‘The Kangaroo Coast’ in Dunghutti language) artwork was officially unveiled to the public last Sunday on Coolangatta Beach, during the final day of the 2022 Australian Beach Volleyball Championships, by Sydney 2000 Olympic Champion Kerri Pottharst and the artist, Brad Hore.  

Hore represented Australia twice at the Olympics and twice at the Commonwealth Games in boxing and is now an Indigenous health worker, motivational speaker, Indigenous Olympic advisor and Aboriginal artist.

“Creating this piece, and every Indigenous art piece, is a privilege,” Hore said. 

“To be able to share our culture and my passion is something I really value in life. For me it’s a way of educating and connecting with others through sport. I’m proud of this incredible piece, knowing the meaning behind it hits home for many of our volleyball athletes! 

“This is a big part of how I give back,” he said.

The artwork represents Australia with its rich colours of red ochre, green coastlines and beautiful rich sand.

“The Wambuyn (Kangaroo) is only native to our land and represents us on the world stage. It creates an icon for our sport, it can represent us as people and as a collective culture where working together creates a family,” Hore explained. 

“The Mulumun (Coast) and sand surround our home, it’s what Australia is so known for. It protects our lands, feeding life and culture all around.

“I hope this is something that brings athletes back together when they’re overseas travelling and creates a connection among them,” he said.

Volleyball Australia CEO Andrew Dee said that VA has been considering the opportunity to create an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island inspired uniform for the national team for some time.

“For an athlete to be a part of the Australian elite teams at any point of our history or future, it recognises the dedication of those who have preceded them and inspires those who will follow. As they represent Australia on the world stage, our athletes are always surrounded by a collective country who are proud and honoured to welcome them home,” Dee said.

“Brad has been remarkable in bringing this concept to life with his talent and art, and we’re so glad to see this concept come to fruition.”

The project was developed by VA with AIS support and funding and in consultation with a working group of athletes and coaches, led by AIS Share a Yarn ambassador and Commonwealth Champion Chris McHugh, and including Brad Tutton, Beau Graham and beach volleyball Olympic silver medalist and first Indigenous Australian to compete in Olympic beach volleyball, Taliqua Clancy.

McHugh said he’s really pleased to have contributed to this project and is looking forward to representing Australia with the Indigenous design on his chest.

“It’s great that we’ve been able to get to this point of having an Indigenous uniform that has a great story behind it – both through the individuals involved in the design and the meaning of the design itself,” he said.

“For me personally, I want to represent Australia and all Australians each and every time I step on the court, and this is a great step to achieving that.

“Taliqua has been a great ambassador for our sport, and her people. Being able to work with her, Brad Tutton, Brad Hore and Beau Graham to put this together, and to help them showcase their culture has been great.

“The AIS Share a Yarn has been a great asset for me, for my education of Indigenous culture and trying to understand to a greater extent the challenges that Indigenous athletes and people face every day,” he said.

Volleyball Australia is currently working with Brad Hore to incorporate the artwork in the uniform design.

Australian fans might be able to spot the Indigenous motif on the Australian uniforms as early as next winter, with important events such as the 2022 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships and the 2022 Volleyball Nations League coming up in June.

Share a Yarn is an initiative developed by the Australian Institute of Sport aiming to provide Australian elite athletes with meaningful opportunities to connect and build relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) communities, and a platform for athletes to share these learnings and advocate within the sporting community and wider Australian community. 

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