I am currently traveling Australia sticking up 1000 poster of Monga Khan, the Aussie folk hero.... The photograph of Monga Khan was taken 100 years ago in Australia. He was one of thousands of people who applied for exemptions to the White Australia Policy. Cameleers, Hawkers and other traders were granted exemptions because their work was essential to Australian's growing economy. For 70 years they played a crucial role... I'd like to celebrate their contribution to Australia.
The aim of this project is to turn Monga Khan into an AUSSIE FOLK HERO and, in doing so, use mythology to embrace our neglected histories and expand Australia's identity.
Through crowd funding I’ve now raised more than what I need to complete my original goal of sticking up 1000 posters. With the excess funds I am commissioning artists and writers to join the project. The resulting body of work will be published as a book of short, fictional stories, poems and artworks that reimagine the life of Monga Khan, as an 'Aussie Folk Hero'. It’s important to point out that this will be a work of historic fiction. Following that tradition, I hope that mythology can continue to act as a vehicle for history, as it has done for thousands of years. I've begun making short films about these collaborations (see below).
At the beginning of 2016 Monga Khan had been hidden within the Australian National Archive for 100 years, and with each passing year his story fades. This project aims to reimagine his life as a symbol for all those who survived the White Australia Policy. By sharing his story we can begin to revitalise what it means to be 'Aussie.'
Minna Leunig donated this reworked poster of Monga Khan which raised $510 at auction, with all the proceeds going to the Asylum Seeker Recourse centre.