“This Artwork Tells The Story of Strength”

“This Artwork Tells The Story of Strength”

The Story of the Shirt Design by Josh Wood, Contemporary Birpai Artist

This artwork tells the story of strength, power and balance coming together as a community, coming together in mind, spirit and practice in the art of karate.

The eagle represents a level of passage as an art form of karate. The eagle symbolises the power, the balance and the ability to move freely in the world.  The connection symbol represents the connection to land and river systems the various centres are on. It notes the connection to nature through harmony of mind, body and spirit that is an important part of the karate journey. The hands stencils symbolise the students that are learning and performing their craft within the centres. The people symbols represent the generations of teachers, in particular the elders, or in this case the masters of the art that guide and pass down the ancient art form of karate.

“In our several conversations about the artwork I asked Josh to do, we agreed that there were parallels in the indigenous cultures, martial arts being one. In these cultures, connection and respect to those who came before, as well as  harmony with nature through mind and body connection were fundamental. Josh also considered the importance of stillness in order to really listen to yourself and to the world around you was of great importance. In martial arts this is also of profound importance.”  Kyoshi Hayes


In contemporary Indigenous Australian art, many artists use symbols as their way of telling a story. Varying from region to region, Indigenous symbols (often called iconography) are generally understood and form an important part of Australian Aboriginal art. The curved U shape is a widely used icon in Aboriginal art and symbolises a person. It represents the shape that is left on the sand when a person sits cross legged. A circle or a set of concentric circles usually signify places where people come together. They can represent a meeting place, fireplace, campsite, a waterhole or a ceremonial site. Waterholes are critical to survival in the desert and for that reason they feature frequently in Aboriginal art. They are often sacred places as ceremonies typically take place at sites where there is an abundant source of water. Accordingly, the symbol representing a ceremony and the symbol for a waterhole are often used interchangeably by artists. Parallel lines linking circles symbolise the journey route people take between a series of locations. Wavy lines represent water running between two sites.


December through to February we allow T-shirt training in the hotter weather. If you’d like to pre-order one of our new Indigenous design HVMAC wicked training t-shirts or polo shirts please contact your centre or use the form below:

Training T-shirts are $45, and Polo shirts are $55.

Indigenous T-shirts Preorder Form

Fill out the form below and then select the sizes and quantity of training shirts or polos that you would like to purchase.