Nova Peris Bronze Statue

In May 2021, a 2.4m bronze statue of Nova Peris will be unveiled in Federation Square, Melbourne at the beginning of Reconciliation Week and will be on display for one month. The statue will then be taken up to Darwin to be permanently placed in Nova’s home town! Artists Gillie and Marc along with Dr Jandamarra Cadd have put this together as part of the world renowned Statues for Equality project.

Portrait in Parliament House

The portrait of Nova Peris OAM, unveiled at Parliament House on Wednesday October 16,2019, is part of Australia’s longest-running art commissioning program, the Historic Memorials Collection – and it is the first to be painted by an Indigenous artist.



The painting, by Dr Jandamarra Cadd, depicts Ms Peris as she presented herself on the day of her first speech to the Senate. Her face is painted in ceremonial style, her gold silk outfit featuring dancing brolgas.

Dr Cadd, a Yorta Yorta and Dja Dja Warrung man, is the first Aboriginal artist to paint a portrait for the Historic Memorials Collection, which was established in 1911.

Ms Peris, a woman of the Yawuru, Gidja and Iwatja people, served as a Senator for the Northern Territory from 2013 to 2016. She said she wanted her portrait to show “all of me – all that I am and all that I have aspired to be”.

Before politics, Ms Peris, as a member of the Hockeyroos at the Atlanta Olympics in 1996, became the first Aboriginal Australian to win an Olympic gold medal. She followed that with two gold medals at the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur, in the 200m sprint and the 4×100-metre relay.

She remains the only person in the world to make back-to-back summer Olympic Games finals in two different sports.

Writer: Tony Wright – Sydney Morning Herald

Nova Peris – Channel 10’s Survivor Australia

There’s not a lot of people who have as many monumental firsts in their life like Nova. She was the first Aboriginal Australian as well as the first Territorian to win a Gold Medal at the Olympics for Hockey. She’s the only person to ever make back to back Olympic finals in two different sports. And was the first female Aboriginal Australian to be elected to the Commonwealth Parliament!

Nova has also been awarded Young Australian of the Year and received a medal of the Order of Australia, making her Nova Peris OAM.

Now ready to take on Survivor, she is hoping her success in life will equal success on the island but is also ready for a new opportunity saying; “I’ve done most things in life and this is so off the grid from the modern world. My mother and grandparents are survivors and wanted to see if I can be one too.”

Believing she’s relentless, Nova thinks her mental strength and never give up attitude will also help her along the way. And it doesn’t hurt to have a background in politics to know how to work with people.

“Of course, I think I can win. I have had to get along with people my whole life. My social skills are very good and I’m mentally tough. Nothing much phases me!”

Mum of four and grandmother to one, Nova is out there to win.


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