First Nations multimedia artist and political activist dies aged 67

Mob and arts sector colleagues mourn the loss of the renowned First Nations artist.
‘DESTINY’, installation view at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, 2020-21. Photo: Tom Ross.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers are advised this article contains the name of a person who has died.

KuKu (Far North Queensland) and Erub/Mer (Torres Strait Islands) artist, Dr Destiny Deacon, has died in Naarm/Melbourne at the age of 67. The well-respected figure in contemporary art once described herself as ‘just an old-fashioned political artist’.

Deacon was born in Maryborough, Queensland in 1957 before moving with her family to Port Melbourne, Victoria in 1959.

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Celina Lei is an arts writer and editor at ArtsHub. She acquired her M.A in Art, Law and Business in New York with a B.A. in Art History and Philosophy from the University of Melbourne. She has previously worked across global art hubs in Beijing, Hong Kong and New York in both the commercial art sector and art criticism. She took part in drafting NAVA’s revised Code of Practice - Art Fairs and was the project manager of ArtsHub’s diverse writers initiative, Amplify Collective. Celina is based in Naarm/Melbourne. Instagram @lleizy_