NT Artist, Visual Arts Northern Territory


(Our Own Tiwi Ochre Colours)
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Presented by Munupi Arts and Jilamara Arts and Craft Association

Showcasing the profusion and vibrancy of Tiwi artists across several generations, this annual exhibition offers some of the best new work by emerging and senior Tiwi artists, as well as a chance to meet them and experience Yoi (dance) at an opening celebration on Friday 5 August.

Nginingawula Kurrujipuni brings together Tiwi Island artists from Jilamara Arts and Crafts Association and Munupi Aboriginal Arts and Crafts Association. Both Art Centres are remote Tiwi owned and governed art centres located on Melville Island, the larger of the Tiwi Islands.

Internationally renowned for their authentic, contemporary Tiwi artwork, the artists create work based on jilamara (body painting design), clan totems and Tiwi creation stories. The art of the Tiwi people has a unique aesthetic that draws from their ancient ceremonial traditions and the associated intricate and expressive designs painted with local natural ochres. These pigments applied to the bodies and to salient ceremonial carvings during ritualistic performances are important aspects of these ceremonies that incorporate highly elaborate dances and underpin the development of contemporary Tiwi art. Each artist uses their own inspiration and style to create with the limitations of these natural hues a vast array of pulsating visual forms. The result is an emotional and exuberant celebration of applied local colours that evokes the unique world-view of the Tiwi people as well as their ancient and complex traditions and mythologies. Limited by the natural pigments of yellow, red, white and black Tiwi artists create a surprising diversity of highly dynamic visual elaborations as they skilfully merge contemporary personal ideas with ancient meaningful symbology.

  • Image Delores Tipuamantumirri hand working with the Pwoja

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