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David Nixon Film Works

Community, Country and Technology, 2020

Kwementyaye (David) Nixon was a film-maker of Central Australia. He made and shared hundreds of films and videos over thirty years. He and collaborators showed the lives and the cultures of Central Australian people to audiences across Australia. His works weave family, community, corporate, indigenous, government and non-government sectors. They celebrate the achievements of artists, musicians, environmentalists, Aboriginal people, young people and others. He made movies of, or projected them at, iconic initiatives –Wide Open Spaces, the Alice Desert Festival, the Beanie Festival, Bush Bands Bash, Blaken, Desert Mob, UPK, Wearable Arts and more. Dave’s films raised the public profile of ALEC and the EcoFair too.

Dave is a Territory legend. He is renowned for his talent and exceptional generosity. He was variously an employee (including CAAMA, ABC), a keen collaborator on film crews and a sole operator. He was said to be one of the best editors in Australia. He was a camera man, sound recordist, story-maker and in later years, a director. In documentary, artworks, hybrid works he was a creative man. David could also be an excellent teacher of media. His multi-media innovations were at the forefront of trends. His films won Territory and national awards for other people and organisations; and even himself.

Dave supported ALEC and lived a commitment to sustainability with practices such as re-purposing, low-impact living, equity, income fairness, community networking and more. But he was no zealot; he had passions for parties, trains, road trips - he edited forty years of Finke Desert Race Films! The diversity of his solo and co-productions reflect eclectic interests.

In January 2020, Dave passed away in Mparntwe. He is succeeded by three young adult children, his family and community - his tribe. Numerous film-makers, creatives and others hold diverse memories of him as mentor and friend. 

Tonight, we show a few of Dave’s film works. He would hope you will be entertained, informed even inspired. Perhaps this will encourage searches for his films and curiosity about what else might be in the archives. 

Jimmy Cocking (ALEC) invited Fiona Walsh to curate this collection; these notes were compiled by Fiona. We thank Dave’s colleagues - Nick Lee (CAAMA), Shane Mulcahy, David Batty, Bill Davis and Luke Scholes for suggestions and help to source these films. Andre Sawenko screens them.  To each of Dave’s family and loved ones we say sorry for your loss and we remember Dave with affection and respect. 

Dave diligently uploaded his works. You can view hundreds of them on the links below:

On Vimeo: - 148 videos since 2011 

On Youtube: - 90 videos since 2006


Bush Mechanics Original