Mandaang Guwu: Karen Lee and Cadbury Collaborate for Mother’s Day
Mandaang guwu is Wiradjuri language for thankyou. It’s a message that esteemed Bluethumb artist and proud Wiradjuri woman Karen Lee Mungarrja has chosen to be central in her recent collaboration with Cadbury.
Cadbury Roses have just released a Mother’s Day exclusive, with the box design created by Karen Lee. “It is important to tell a contemporary narrative that reflects my experience as an Aboriginal woman in an urban society,” Karen says when asked about the collaboration. “This artwork is a representation of the little things women do every day that together encompass the beautiful love that is motherhood. Sometimes it’s the little things that have the biggest impact.”
A Bluethumb Art Prize 2021 Finalist, Karen is an established artist at Bluethumb, with 372 artworks sold to date. She is a self-empowered artist and female figure, beginning her art career at 35, studying a fine arts degree and working at the same time. Mungarrja speaks of her rise as an artist: “I had no idea of what would come and I still am amazed that it has evolved into something I would never have dreamt of.” It’s the kind of story that inspires.
As a mother and grandmother herself, connection to family is key to her identity. Mungarrja is the name given to her by uncle Michael Gararroongoo Huddleston a Roper River Elder, which in Indigenous culture names are decided by Elders.
Karen sends an important message with her collaboration. Cadbury is helping to spread this message, contributing $50,000 to The Stars Foundation who are providing mentoring or guidance to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and girls. The Stars Foundation indicates that 98% of those involved have graduated secondary school.
To celebrate Karen Lee’s collaboration with Cadbury’s, we’ve teamed up to give away 5 original masterpieces by Karen and 5 boxes of the new special edition Roses box featuring Karen’s art.
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Click here to enter the competition on our Instagram post.