Petrina Turner’s “New again” collaboration with Designer Rugs is perfectly fitting for someone who holds tightly to the places and people that have influenced her life which shape this stunning rage of rugs. We sat down with Petrina get the down-low on this quiet achiever.
Q – What inspires you to create?
So many things inspire me to create! My childhood memories… fragments of fabulous family holidays, treasured mementos, moments in time that suddenly come front of mind … travel is certainly a favourite inspiration, the culture and colour of far off places… and my amazing tribe, who I see creating there own beautiful objects/ spaces/ stories and encouraging me to do the same. Inspiration is everywhere!
Q- On a personal note, you lend your voice to asylum seekers, what connects you to these people? With both political parties sharing similar views what advise can you give people wanting to help?
This could take a while… When I was twenty seven I travelled for nine months around the world and it really opened my eyes, mind and heart. I travelled all over, and found that in the smallest villages, where people have so little, they are so happy to share their home and their food and their hearts with a stranger. I realised too how incredibly lucky I was to be born in a country that offers me safety and opportunity and freedom. Sheer luck not to be born say in Afghanistan or Syria or Somalia. Then Tampa happened and I could not believe that it could be so easy for politics to get in the way of humanity. That people could be so easily demonised. I was tired of yelling my anger at the television and 6 years ago I googled “asylum seekers”, “Melbourne” and “volunteer” and found the incredible ASRC (Asylum Seeker Resource Centre). Since then I have had the privilege to know many beautiful people who have come to our lucky country to seek our help. You cannot look someone in the eyes who is seeking asylum and hear their stories and ignore it. What connects me to people seeking asylum is that they could be me, and if I was in need I would hope that someone would lend me a hand. We need to remember that they are people first, who have the same hopes and dreams that we do, that have the same rights we do. They are strong and brave and beautiful, and I am a better person for having met them. It’s a really polarising topic because there is so much myth surrounding people seeking asylum, much of it perpetuated by politicians and the media. And it’s not right, and it shouldn’t be political. It’s a human issue. So my advise for anyone who wants to help is to start having more conversations. Find out the facts for yourself, resources abound (ASRC/ UNHCR/ Australian Government websites to name a few), and let your voice be heard. If enough people speak up about injustice politicians on both sides will have to listen. And maybe then we can start treating vulnerable people seeking our help with the respect, dignity and care they deserve.
Q- If you were a new addition to a crayon box. What color would you be and why?
A tough question after the last one… but I would definitely be a glitter crayon, so I could add a layer my sparkle whenever and wherever it was needed.
Q If you could be any animal in the world, what animal would you be and why?
If you asked me what was my favourite animal I would say the Meerkat. They are so inquisitive and communal… and funny. I laugh with joy so much whenever I see one. But oh to have that beautiful pink plumage of a flamingo…
Q What do you want to be when you grow up?
I want to be just who I am… but with more of my sh*t together.
Q – Its no secret you love pink, how would you describe Pink to somebody who is blind.
Pink is the taste of cotton candy…… the smell of the first peonies of the season… the sound of Tchaikovsky’s “Waltz of the Flowers” from the Nutcracker Suite … and the flush you feel in your cheeks in a moment of joy.