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Celebrating Culture: Contemporary Indigenous Art

Works by contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists are featured in this exhibition, which examines themes of identity, colonisation, place, personal history, community and the diversity and richness of a significant cultural heritage.

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2 May–28 July 2019

Exhibition essay

Contemporary Indigenous experiences and cultural practices are investigated through a compelling and dynamic selection of paintings, photography, mixed-media, video, sculpture, ceramics, and installations on loan from public art museum collections, private collections and private galleries. Exhibiting artists include Brook Andrew, Tony Albert, Hannah Brontë, Michael Cook, Janet Fieldhouse, Gali Yalkarriwuy Gurruwiwi, Hayley Millar-Baker, Kent Morris, Vincent Namatjira, Wayne Quilliam, James Tylor and Vicki West.

Many of the works are embedded with stories about Aboriginal culture and history, traditional narratives and personal experience, reaffirming connections to Country, language, community and tradition. Established and emerging artists from different language groups innovate, regenerate and continue their rich cultural practices across mainly urban and some bush environments. Harnessing the potential of photography, new technologies and other mediums, the artists redefine and subvert myths, stereotypes and representations of Indigenous people; imbuing their work with social and political commentary and transforming perceptions of Indigenous art in Australia.

The exhibition recognises and celebrates the power, creativity and dynamism of contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art. History is re-imagined or re-told from an Indigenous perspective by artists who engage with thought provoking post-colonial narratives, history, cultural traditions and personal experience. Transforming Australia’s cultural landscape, they generate new perspectives and a deeper understanding about the complexity and strength of Indigenous culture.

Programmed in association with the 2019 Glen Eira Storytelling Festival, National Reconciliation Week, and NAIDOC Week.

Glen Eira City Council respectfully acknowledges the Boon Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation, who have traditional connections to the land now known as Glen Eira. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging, and acknowledge and uphold their continuing relationship to this land.


Installation views

Glen Eira City Council Gallery | Celebrating Culture: Contemporary Indigenous Art | Exhibition installation | 2 May – 28 July 2019 | Photo: Mark Ashkanasy
Glen Eira City Council Gallery | Celebrating Culture: Contemporary Indigenous Art | Exhibition installation | 2 May – 28 July 2019 | Photo: Mark Ashkanasy
Glen Eira City Council Gallery | Celebrating Culture: Contemporary Indigenous Art | Exhibition installation | 2 May – 28 July 2019 | Photo: Mark Ashkanasy
Glen Eira City Council Gallery | Celebrating Culture: Contemporary Indigenous Art | Exhibition installation | 2 May – 28 July 2019 | Photo: Mark Ashkanasy
Glen Eira City Council Gallery | Celebrating Culture: Contemporary Indigenous Art | Exhibition installation | 2 May – 28 July 2019 | Photo: Mark Ashkanasy
Glen Eira City Council Gallery | Celebrating Culture: Contemporary Indigenous Art | Exhibition installation | 2 May – 28 July 2019 | Photo: Mark Ashkanasy

List of artists and works

Tony Albert

Born 1981 Townsville, Queensland
Language groups: Girramay, East Cape region, Kuku Yalanji,
East Cape region

Mid century Modern Collage 4 2017
Photographic prints, acrylic paint, stickers, aluminium, archival glue
20 x 20 cm
Ten Cubed Collection

We’ve golden soil and wealth for toil 2018
Acrylic on canvas
125 x 120 cm
Ten Cubed Collection

Brook Andrew

Born 1970 Sydney, New South Wales
Language group: Wiradjuri, Southern Riverine region

Systems II  2016
Mixed media
240 x 165 cm
Ten Cubed Collection

Systems I 2016
Mixed media, neon
240 x 165 cm
Ten Cubed Collection

Ceramics I 2018
Ink, acrylic paint, linen
125 x 250 cm
Ten Cubed Collection

Horizon  2017
Linen, acrylic polymer paint, neon, photographic plastic, pigment powder and resin on dibond
160 x 240 cm
Ten Cubed Collection

Hannah Brontë

Born 1991 Brisbane, Queensland
Language group: Wakka Wakka, North-East region, Yaegel, South-East region

Umma’s Tongue–molten at 6000°  2017
High definition video, sound
4:48 minutes
Monash University Collection
Purchased 2018
Courtesy of Monash University Museum of Art

Michael Cook

Born 1968, Brisbane, Queensland
Language group: Bidjara

Mother-Merry Go Round 2016
Inkjet print
80 x 120 cm
Finch Art Collective

Mother-Bicycle 2016
Inkjet print
80 x 120 cm
Private Collection, Courtesy of THIS IS NO FANTASY

Janet Fieldhouse

Born 1971, Cairns, Queensland.
Language group: Kalaw Lagaw Ya, Meriam Mir, Torres Strait Islands, Queensland

Confluence Scarification Hybrids Series 4 2018
Buff Raku Trachyte, Southern Ice
40 x 39 x 18 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Confluence Scarification Hybrids Series 5 2018
Buff Raku Trachyte, Southern Ice
24 x 27 x 10 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Hybrids Fishhooks Series 3 2017
Buff Raku Trachyte, jute twine
66 x 27 x 27cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Mark and Memory 6 2014
Red raku
30 x 40 x 20 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Mark and Memory 3 2014
Red raku, black and white charcoal
50 x 32 x 11 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Bride Pendant Series 6 2015
Mid fire porcelain, feathers, string, shells
100 x 73 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Bride Pendant Series 6 2015
Mid fire porcelain, feathers, string, shells
100 x 73 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Gali Yalkarriwuy Gurruwiwi

Born 1942
Language group: Galpu, Arnhem region
Community: Galiwin’ku (Elcho Island) Arnhem region

Banumbirr-Morning Star Pole 2007–2008
Natural earth pigment on wood with bush string and feathers
186 cm (height)
Monash University Collection
Purchased 2009
Courtesy of Monash University Museum of Art

Banumbirr-Morning Star Pole 2007–2008
Natural earth pigment on wood with bush string and feathers
186 cm (height)
Monash University Collection
Purchased 2009
Courtesy of Monash University Museum of Art

Banumbirr-Morning Star Pole 2007–2008
Natural earth pigment on wood with bush string and feathers
256 cm (height)
Monash University Collection
Purchased 2009
Courtesy of Monash University Museum of Art

Banumbirr-Morning Star Pole 2007–2008
Natural earth pigment on wood with bush string and feathers
234 cm (height)
Monash University Collection
Purchased 2009
Courtesy of Monash University Museum of Art

Banumbirr-Morning Star Pole 2007–2008
Natural earth pigment on wood with bush string and feathers
190 cm (height)
Monash University Collection
Purchased 2009
Courtesy of Monash University Museum of Art

Banumbirr-Morning Star Pole 2007–2008
Natural earth pigment on wood with bush string and feathers
210 cm (height)
Monash University Collection
Purchased 2009
Courtesy of Monash University Museum of Art

Hayley Millar-Baker

Born 1990, Melbourne, Victoria
Language group: Gunditjmara

Even if the race is fated to disappear 2 (Peeneeyt Meerreeng/Before, Now, Tomorrow) 2017
Inkjet on cotton rag
150 x 80 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Even if the race is fated to disappear 3 (Peeneeyt Meerreeng/Before, Now, Tomorrow) 2017
Inkjet on cotton rag
120 x 80 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Even if the race is fated to disappear 7 (Peeneeyt Meerreeng/Before, Now, Tomorrow) 2017
Inkjet on cotton rag
140 x 80 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

 

Kent Morris

Born in 1964, Townsville, Queensland
Language group: Barkindji 

Barkindji (Bourke) Magpie-lark 2017
Archival print on rag paper
Edition of eight, 150 x 100 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Boonwurrung (St Kilda) Rainbow Lorikeet 2017
Archival print on rag paper
Edition of eight, 150 x 100 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Boonwurrung (St Kilda) Sulphur crested Cockatoo 2017
Archival print on rag paper
Edition of eight
150 x 100 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Boonwurrung (St Kilda) Red Wattlebird 2017
Archival print on rag paper
Edition of eight
150 x 100 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Boonwurrung (St Kilda) Magpie 2017
Archival print on rag paper
Edition of eight
150 x 100 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Ngemba (Cobar) Willy Wagtail 2017
Archival print on rag paper
Edition of eight
150 x 100 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Wemba Wemba (Deneliquin) Yellow Rosella 2017
Archival print on rag paper
Edition of eight
150 x 100 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Butchulla (Hervey Bay) Blue-Faced Honeyeater 2017
Archival print on rag paper
Edition of eight
150 x 100 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Barkindji (Broken Hill) Little Corella 2017
Archival print on rag paper
Edition of eight
150 x 100 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Boonwurrung (St Kilda) Crow 2017
Archival print on rag paper
Edition of eight
150 x 100 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Vincent Namatjira

Born 1983 Alice Springs, Northern Territory
Language groups: Aranda, Pitjantjatjara, Yankunytjatjara

Queen Elizabeth & Donald 2018
Acrylic on canvas
122 x 155 cm
Private Collection, Courtesy of THIS IS NO FANTASY

Vincent & Donald (Indulkana) 2018
Acrylic on canvas
122 x 155 cm
Private Collection, Courtesy of THIS IS NO FANTASY

James Tylor (Possum)

Born 1986, Mildura, Victoria
Language group: Kaurna/Mᾱori

Un-resettling (Animal Net) from the series
Un-resettling (Huntings) 2017
Hand coloured digital print
50 x 50 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Un-resettling (Earth Oven) from the series
Un-resettling (Huntings) 2017
Hand coloured digital print
50 x 50 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Un-resettling (Fish Trap) from the series
Un-resettling (Huntings) 2017
Hand coloured digital print
50 x 50 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Un-resettling (Hunting Wombats) from the series
Un-resettling (Huntings) 2017
Hand coloured digital print
50 x 50 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Un-resettling (Waterhole) from the series
Un-resettling (Huntings) 2017
Hand coloured digital print
50 x 50 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Un-resettling (Rat Trap) from the series
Un-resettling (Hauntings) 2016
Hand coloured digital print
50 x 50 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Un-resettling (Bird Snare) from the series
Un-resettling (Hauntings) 2016
Hand coloured digital print
50 x 50 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Un-resettling (Cairn,Land Mark) from the series
Un-resettling (Hauntings) 2016
Hand coloured digital print
50 x 50 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Un-resettling (Bird Hide) from the series
Un-resettling (Hauntings) 2016
Hand coloured digital print
50 x 50 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Vicki West

Born 1960 Launceston, Tasmania
Language group: Trawlwolway, from Tebrakunna in the north-east coast region of Tasmania

Vessels 2014
Kelp, netting twine
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Vessel 2014
Kelp, netting twine
15 x 15 x 7 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Vessel 2014
Kelp, kelp stalk, netting twine
18.5 x 18.5 x 8 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery

Vessel 2014
Kelp, emu feathers, netting twine
20 x 20 x 10 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Vivien Anderson Gallery


Video: Celebrating Culture with Kent Morris


Video: Celebrating Culture with Vivien Anderson