Indigenous artwork takes centre stage for major exercise

Air Commander Australia and International Air Force representatives were the first to see the official artwork of Exercise Pitch Black 18 when it was presented by Mr Joe Raymond of the Larrakia people.

Air Commander Australia, Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Steven Roberton, DSC, AM was presented with the exercise artwork by the traditional owners at a special ceremony at RAAF Base Darwin.

AVM Roberton said the finalisation of the artwork demonstrated the strong connection and respect Air Force has for both the traditional owners and the Top End population.

“I would like to thank the Larrakia people, the traditional owners of the lands and waters upon which we currently stand and over which we fly, for the beautiful artwork they have created to represent Exercise Pitch Black 18,” AVM Roberton said.

Air Force’s Senior Indigenous Liaison Officer, Wing Commander Jonathan Lilley, said the artwork had special meaning to both Air Force and the local Northern Territory communities.

“Mr Joe Raymond has done an incredible job, with the Eagle representing our Air Force as ‘fierce fighters’ and the kangaroo representing the Central Desert of the Northern Territory and a symbol of ‘brothers in arms.”

“The Ochre depicts the Casuarina Coastal area and the Barramundi and Crocodile represent the Top End and the Saltwater people.”

Exercise Pitch Black 18 will be conducted from 27 July to 17 August 2018, with forces predominantly based at RAAF Darwin and RAAF Tindal.

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