Lisa Bellear

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Lisa Bellear
Photo of Lisa Bellear.jpg
Publicity photo from The University Of Queensland Press[1]
Born (1961-05-02)May 2, 1961
Melbourne, Victoria
Died July 5, 2006(2006-07-05) (aged 45)
Melbourne, Victoria
Nationality Australian
Known for Poetry, Photography

Lisa (Marie) Bellear (2 May 1961 in Melbourne, Victoria – 5 July 2006 in Melbourne) was an Indigenous Australian poet, photographer, activist, spokeswoman, dramatist, comedian and broadcaster.[2] She was a Goernpil woman of the Noonuccal people of Minjerribah (Stradbroke Island), Queensland. Her uncles were Bob Bellear, Australia's first Indigenous judge, and Sol Bellear who helped to found the Aboriginal Housing Corporation in Redfern in 1972.

Bellear was adopted into a white family as a baby and was told she had Polynesian heritage.[3] As an adult she explored her Aboriginal roots.[4]

Bellear died unexpectedly at her home in Melbourne. She was 45 years old.

Published works and photography[edit]

Bellear wrote Dreaming In Urban Areas (UQP, 1996), a book of poetry which explores the experience of Aboriginal people in contemporary society. She said in an interview with Roberta Sykes that her 'poetry was not about putting down white society. It's about self-discovery.'[5]

Other poetry was published in journals and newspapers. She was awarded the Deadly Awards prize in 2006 for making an outstanding contribution to literature with her play The Dirty Mile: A History of Indigenous Fitzroy, a suburb of Melbourne.

Bellear was a prolific photographer[6]. Her work was exhibited at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games and at the Melbourne Museum as part of their millennium celebrations.[7]

Community activities[edit]

Bellear was a broadcaster at the community radio station 3CR in Melbourne where she presented the show 'Not Another Koori Show' for over 20 years.

She was also a founding member of the Ilbijerri Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Theatre Co-op, the longest-running Aboriginal theatre troupe in Australia. Ilbijerri produced The Dirty Mile in March 2006 as a dramatised walking trail through the streets of Fitzroy, Melbourne.


In 2008 Bellear was inducted posthumously to the Victorian Honour Roll of Women.


  1. ^ "Author Lisa Bellear". The University Of Queensland Press. Retrieved 23 May 2017. 
  2. ^ Brown, Jen Jewel. "An inspiring, dynamic warrior woman". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 23 May 2017. 
  3. ^ Winkler, Michael (7 July 2004). "Till many voices shake us". Melbourne: The Age, 7 July 2004. 
  4. ^ Roberta Sykes, 'The Stolen Generation', in American Book Review, vol.18 no.4 May–June 1997, pp 8-9.
  5. ^ Roberta Sykes, op.cit.
  6. ^ Harmon, Steph. "Lisa Bellear captures decades of Indigenous Australian protests – in pictures". The Guardian. Guardian Australia. Retrieved 23 May 2017. 
  7. ^ "Vale Lisa Bellear" Archived 11 June 2009 at the Library of Congress Web Archives