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Jennifer Deger


Jennifer Deger is Professor of Digital Humanities, Northern Institute, College of Indigenous Futures, Education and Arts, Charles Darwin University in Darwin, and previously Assistant Professor and Tropical Leader in the College of Arts, Society & Education at James Cook University in Cairns. She has worked in the community of Gapuwiyak, Northern Territory, since the early 1990s when she began working with Bangana Wunungmurra - who died in 2002 and is pictured above with Jennifer in 1996.

As a founding member of Miyarrka Media, a collective based in Gapuwiyak, Jennifer's practice-led research claims creativity as a critical mode of social engagement and anaysis. In  collaboration with her Yolngu colleagues from Miyarrka Media, she has co-dircted several award winning films and co-curated experimental installations and exhibitions in Denmark, the US and Australia. In 2015 Jennifer established the Visual, Digital, Material: Experimental Screen and Museum Ethnography program at JCU together with Prof Ton Otto and Prof Rosita Henry. From 2015 to 2018 Jennifer has been appointed as Smithsonian Research Associate with the National Museum of Natural History, Washington DC, and in 2017 and 2018 Jennifer was a Visiting Research Fellow in with the transdisciplinary AURA project (Aarhus University Research on The Anthropocene).

Jennifer was interviewed at home in Cairns, with questions from Tony Dowmunt in the UK, via Zoom.

“The power of the new to revitalize the old…” (interview with full transcript & links)

00:10 Coming across Satellite Dreaming

"I decided to do a PhD in anthropology and became really interested in indigenous media…"

01:54 Settling at Gapuwiyak & meeting Bangana Wunungmurra

"I did about a nine month trip across Australia…"

04:48 Making Gularri with Bangana

"He could see the relational and the connective possibilities in the media…"

07:40 Forming Miyaarka Media, making Ringtone

"Between the Gularri film and Ringtone, there was another …15 years of production…"

10:53 Mobile phone media & tradition

"Mobile phones gave people an opportunity to remediate their own culture."

14:38 NITV & ICTV

"I think that it's important to really acknowledge ICTV’s role…"

16:10 From the ‘politics of representation’, to co-creativity

"When I started  off in the 90s…this was the time of the politics of representation."