Visual Art


Free Event

The annual exhibition showcasing the latest and very best Tiwi art returns.

Ngini Ngawula Pakaryingini brings together Tiwi Island artists from Munupi Arts and Crafts Association and Jilamara Arts and Crafts Association — two Tiwi owned and governed non-profit art centres operating on Melville Island, in the communities of Pirlangimpi and Milikapiti. Showcasing the cornucopia of Tiwi artists across multiple generations, this annual exhibition offers some of the best new work by both emerging and senior Tiwi artists, as well as a chance to meet them and experience ‘Yoi’ (dance) at an opening celebration on Friday 9 August.

Internationally renowned for their contemporary artwork, the artists create visual expressions based on ‘jilamara’ (body painting design), clan totems and Tiwi creation stories using natural ochres on linen, canvas, stringy bark and ironwood.

The art of the Tiwi people has a unique aesthetic that draws from their ancient ceremonial traditions and the associated designs painted with local natural ochres. These pigments, which are applied to the body and to significant ceremonial carvings for performances, are important aspects of Tiwi culture, including traditional dances that continue to inform the evolution of Tiwi art. Each artist uses their unique inspiration, identity and style to create within the scope of possibilities of the natural ochres available to them, affording a distinct pallet. The result is a vivid expression and celebration of local Tiwi colours that echo the unique landscape and worldview of the Tiwi people, as well as their ancient mythologies and relationship to ‘Country’.

Presented by Munupi Arts and Jilamara Arts and Craft Association

  • Image Carving by Patrick Freddy Puruntatameri, 2023.

  • Image courtesy the artist and Jilamara Arts and Crafts Association.
  • Photo Will Heathcote

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