The exhibition was conceived in 2009 by Dr. Davide Sandrini of STart Management in Italy, who approached the Arts Ministry in Italy for advice on who to contact in Australia for the supply of Aboriginal artwork. Maria Sanciollo – Bell was approached and she in turn made contact with Hans Sip for advice.
The brief was was to put together a large collection of Australian Aboriginal artworks and artifacts representing all the states and reflecting the diversity of styles, materials and stories of the Aboriginal peoples.
Sip approached Maree Clarke of the Koori Heritage Trust to be the curator of the exhibition and the selection process commenced. Dr. Sandrini and three colleagues flew out from Italy in November 2009 to assist in the catalogueing and further selection of pieces.
The end result was an exhibtion of over 300 items which had a working title of Gori – Illa or The Rainbow Serpent. It was later changed to 'Lo Spirito Dell’arte Aboriginal’ or Dreamtime when shown at the MAN Museum at Nuoro.
Ten artist from Victoria, Tasmania and NSW loaned their own works to the exhibition totalling 31 pieces. A further 30 pieces were loaned to MAN Museum by Adam Williams and Hans Sip of Three Brothers Gallery Pty Ltd contributed the remaining 270 items.
The exhibition has been endorsed by the Australian Embassy in Rome, The Australian Institute of Culture, Melbourne and His Excellency Marco Panacotta, The Italian Consul General to Australia.
Hans Sip of Three Brothers Gallery was approached mid 2009 by Maria Sanciollo-Bell for an artist he could recommend to travel to Sicily on a cross cultural project. He put forward Billy Doolan, one of the three living artists represented by the gallery.
A one month tour of Sicily followed in August of that year and Billy documented what he saw and experienced in a series of eight paintings commisioned for Maria through Three Brothers Gallery.
The exhibition was augmented by a further seven traditional works from the private collection of Hans Sip and was to run from the 28th of October 2010 to the 31st of December 2010.
The exhibition was featured on the ABC’s 7:30 Report in March 2011.