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One Road & Mira Canning Stock Route Project Archive

About One Road & Mira Canning Stock Route Project Archive









Mira (Martu Wangka): to bring something hidden into the lightMira: Canning Stock Route Project Archive represents the culmination of FORM’s award-winning Canning Stock Route Project. Developed by FORM  and the Centre for Digital Archaeology at UC Berkeley (CoDA), Mira is a groundbreaking tool for preserving and sharing the Project’s invaluable cultural heritage with both participating communities and where culturally appropriate, the general public.Canning Stock Route Project filmmaker and Martu cultural advisor Curtis Taylor coined the name Mira, which means ‘to reveal what was hidden’ or ‘to bring something hidden into the light’ in Martu Wangka. Mira will both reveal and protect this immensely valuable content for participating Aboriginal art centres, giving communities access to and use of their own cultural heritage materials for the benefit of future generations.

Mira contains a vast trove of materials including nearly 40,000 unique items, amongst these more than 250 oral histories, including audio and filmed interviews and translated and transcribed documents, approximately 7,000 clips of raw film footage, around 150 short films, over 20,000 photographs, historical records, curated materials and other research. More than a mere archive, Mira is a groundbreaking digital storytelling platform, which allows users to engage with the people, stories, events and artworks that have defined the Project, in which rich associations are created between a diverse range of content that encourage continuing exploration and discovery and create a comprehensive insight into the Project’s development and its legacy.

Working in partnership with the Arts Law Centre of Australia through its Artists in the Black program and Herbert Smith Freehills FORM has developed an extensive best practice framework of agreements to protect the Indigenous Cultural Intellectual Property and copyright of Aboriginal participants, and allows commercial benefits to be returned to communities. This approach to licensing and the distribution of benefits continues the best practice approach and ethical ambitions of the Project. Mira is the heart of the Canning Stock Route Digital Futures Project, a digital access initiative which also incorporates One Road: Canning Stock Route Project app for iOS and web.

Initiated in 2006 by FORM and a collaboration with 10 remote Aboriginal art centres and communities, Ngurra Kuju Walyja — One Country One People — The Canning Stock Route Project tells an intercultural and intergenerational story of community, collaboration and reconciliation. Explore the entire Canning Stock Route Project here.









Part  rich cultural resource, part travel guide, One Road is an interactive map spanning the 2000km Canning Stock Route, which was surveyed between 1906 and 1910 to transport cattle to the south during the first of the state’s mining booms.One Road tells the story of a pioneering track that cut a line through three deserts and irrevocably changed the lives and destinies of the Aboriginal people whose Country it transected. It explores the hidden connections between people, Country, culture and history along the world’s longest, and reputedly most dangerous, historic cattle route.Told from the perspectives of Aboriginal contributors and historical figures, One Road captures a story of exploration, first contact, conflict, diaspora, droving, culture, Country and family and the development of an art movement that has taken the world by storm.Features include:

  • A scale-able hand-drawn historic map of the stock route by surveyor Alfred Canning and detailed notes relating to wells and land features.
  • Interchangeable aerial view of the route.
  • Essential information for 4WD travellers about first aid, permits, camping, restricted areas, vehicle preparation and cultural protocols.
  • Over 100 images of paintings from the Canning Stock Route collection, acquired by the National Museum of Australia as a ‘national treasure’, with accompanying stories and diagrams.
  • 160 videos located along the route documenting historical accounts of life in the desert and the droving era; traditional hunting practices, Dreaming stories, the stock route wells and contemporary life in communities.
  • Hundreds of text, image and video-based stories documenting the extraordinary events that have occurred along the route since 1906, drawn from archival research and oral histories.
  • Stories of the Aboriginal guides who led Alfred Canning’s 1906 survey team to the waters that would became the stock route wells, sourced from a 1908 royal commission.
  • Information about Aboriginal languages spoken in the stock route region and a dictionary of essential words.
  • 3D animations of Australian wildlife and ancestral beings including knob tailed geckos, thorny devils, ants, and the sacred ancestral rainbow serpent.
  • Information about each of the stock route wells, including water condition, drinking quality and native title region.
  • Information about the Aboriginal art centres involved in the Canning Stock Route Project and contact details for purchasing ethical contemporary art.
  • A portal into Mira Canning Stock Route Project archive for those who want to delve deeper into the content.

One Road is an outcome of the Canning Stock Route Project, which was initiated by FORM in 2006. One Road is based on the internationally award-winning multimedia display, which was a feature of Yiwarra Kuju: the Canning Stock Route the blockbuster exhibition co-produced by FORM and the National Museum of Australia. The app is based on its internationally award-winning multimedia display (Silver, MUSE Awards 2011) and now features an extensive range of new content for travellers and 4WD enthusiasts, art lovers, history and culture buffs, teachers and students.

Download to make a difference: All sales of the One Road app benefit participating Aboriginal artists and art centres with 90% of all profits returning to the eight participating art centres.



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