The Aje Report


Aje Insider | Meet Creative Director Nina Fitzgerald

The tastemaker talks life on Larrakia Country, 'Lumen' and her love of nature.  

A creative director, gallerist, writer and photographer: Nina Fitzgerald is a woman of many talents.


Partly inspired by the diverse beauty of Larrakia Country—Darwin, Australia—the proud Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander woman found her creative path young, driven by an insatiable curiosity and the power of its pursuit as a way to influence change.


To learn more about Nina’s life, style and career, The Aje Report caught up with the Going North and Laundry Gallery founder in Darwin, where she styled and captured the latest looks from Summer 23 ‘Lumen’.


Below, keep reading for our conversation with Aje Insider, Nina Fitzgerald.


Nina Fitzgerald wears the Zorina Tie Midi Dress 

The Aje Report: With a career spanning creative direction, writing, photography and gallery curation, your resume is nothing short of impressive. Take us back to the moment your creative journey began—what inspired you to pursue this path?


Nina Fitzgerald: I have always had an affinity for all things creative. A constantly dreaming, ever curious and imaginative mind, when I was young I was always making things, like jewellery or polymer clay beads, or pressing tropical flowers to make paper. And I’ve loved cooking for as long as I can remember—a form of creativity, I’d say.

Pursuing creativity as an adult has been heavily grounded in a love for problem-solving and constant curiosity. There is still so far to go in Australia to right the wrongs of a history rooted in gross injustices towards its First Peoples, but I believe in the power of new creative perspectives to drive education and understanding and ultimately bring positive and influential change across so many aspects of so many lives, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous.


Walk us through a typical day in your life as a creative director and gallerist. What goes on behind the scenes?


No day is ever the same! But Laundry Gallery involves so much behind the scenes. I'm often on the phone or in meetings with artists and art centres curating new shows and stock, working with our graphic designer on catalogues or marketing assets, curating the space for new hangs, running our Instagram and collaborating with other creative folk.


"... I believe in the power of new creative perspectives to drive education and understanding and ultimately bring positive and influential change across so many aspects of so many lives, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous."

What’s something about your job that you think would surprise most people?


My path to get here has been indirect. I studied a science degree, majoring in geography and weather science. Problem-solving and curiosity, as I said earlier, and a passion to protect and work with our precious natural world!


How has living and working on Larrakia Country influenced your sense of style and approach to creativity?


Larrakia Country is the endless summer! Half the year is dry, cool breezes and clear sunny days, and the other half wet, monsoonal thunderstorms and humidity. My sense of style at home reflects the warmth—a comfortable, relaxed ‘less is more’ approach, with natural fabrics and fun statement pieces.

Darwin is a treasure of Australia—ridiculous in its randomness, exceptional in its beauty. It is a diverse cultural melting pot with people from all walks of life, representing many cultures and lived experiences—weathered cowboys or young professionals, creatives, travellers, a pet crocodile in one backyard and a huge pig in another. And surrounded by an immense landscape of impressive contrast. You unlearn everything up here—to relearn, learn and keep learning. I am forever inspired by my surroundings.

It’s a beautiful day in Darwin and your schedule is clear. Describe your perfect day: where would you eat/shop/play/visit?


On days off, I lean into the relaxed Darwin lifestyle. In the dry season, this means perfect weather for being outdoors: a morning foreshore walk, a coffee at the Trader Bar, a swim off the rocks near home, and reading—currently finishing off ‘Shoe Dog’, Nike Founder Phil Knight’s memoir, and flipping through 'M to M of M/M (Paris)'.


[I'd get] lunch from the Parap Markets, and a late arvo drink at the Ski Club or Lola's. I also love to cook beachside crab linguine over the fire for friends—it's an all-time favourite dry season activity!


What’s something you wish more people knew about the Northern Territory?


It is so much more than meets the eye, so it doesn’t really make sense until you experience it.


And it is connected so closely to largely intact and diverse Indigenous populations and cultures. There are so many incredible stories, and much beauty, happiness and positivity.


"You unlearn everything up here—to relearn, learn and keep learning. I am forever inspired by my surroundings."

Aje Co-founders Edwina Forest and Adrian Norris often look to nature for inspiration, and for Summer 23 ‘Lumen’, were drawn to the cyclical beauty of dawn. What memories or thoughts come to mind when we evoke…


… Your first childhood memory of nature?


Camping trips with my dad and my brother, hiking into gorges and jumping off cliff faces into cavernous fresh water plunge pools!


… An aspect of nature that inspires you?




… The relationship between art and nature?


Nature is the boundless muse for artistic and creative form.


Which pieces from ‘Lumen’ do you feel drawn to? Where do you see yourself wearing these pieces?


The Zorina Tie Midi Dress in Fern Green. I would dress it down with chunky sandals and wear it throughout the day whilst moving between my office and the gallery, and into the evening for sunset drinks by the water!


I also love the Thea Draped Twist Crop Top, also in Fern Green—this colour is gorgeous. I would wear with high-waisted shorts or wide-leg pants.


What is the best piece of style advice you have ever received?


Red lipstick goes with everything—from my grandma, the queen of a red lip and the best op shop finds!


What is next for Nina Fitzgerald? What does the future hold for you?


Success to me is continuing to share the stories of Indigenous Australia to new audiences through new creative lenses.


Right now, for me, this is a new screen-printing and textile studio in Darwin, a weaving project working with old knowledge and new deadstock fabrics, cross collaborations with artisans in India, and working with young First Nations people to share their stories through photography and fashion!


And to finish, a couple of quick-fire questions…

… Your capsule wardrobe must-have?


Quality tank tops—the most functional, transeasonal item!


… A word that captures the spirit of Darwin?




Nina wears the Clara Tie Back Mini Dress

Shop the 'Lumen' Edit by Nina Fitzgerald

Explore the latest looks from Summer 23 'Lumen'

Aje Insider: Nina Fitzgerald

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