Tjukurrtjanu TjukurrtjanuTjukurrtjanu: Origins of Western Desert Art

NGV NGVNGV: 150 years Museum VictoriaMuseum Victoria Papanya Tula ArtistsPapanya Tula Artists

  • An NGV Touring Exhibition
  • 30 September 2011 – 12 February 2012
  • The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia,
  • Federation Square, Melbourne
  •  
  • 9 October 2012 – 20 January 2013
  • Musée du quai Branly, Paris

Tjukurrtjanu: Origins of Western Desert Art examines a watershed moment in the history of art when a painting practice emerged at Papunya in Central Australia. Tjukurrtjanu gives prominence to 200 of the first paintings produced at Papunya between 1971 and 1972 and also establishes the vital connection between the works of art and their sources in ephemeral designs made for use in ceremony.

A collaboration between the NGV and Museum Victoria.
In partnership with Papunya Tula Artists Pty Ltd.

This website contains the names, images and works of Indigenous people who have passed away, which may cause distress to some Indigenous people.

Indigenous people from Central Australia and the Western Desert are advised that this exhibition contains culturally sensitive works that may be considered harmful or inappropriate for viewing by women or uninitiated members of their communities. Care has been taken to respect cultural protocols and, following a comprehensive consultation process, these works will be exhibited separately for the duration of the exhibition and will not be illustrated in the exhibition catalogue or displayed on this website.

Please note that some records contain terms and annotations that reflect the period in which the item was recorded, and may be considered inappropriate today in some circumstances.


Geoffrey Bardon AM (1940–2003)

Geoffrey Bardon began working as an art teacher at Papunya Special School in 1971. Concerned that the school's curriculum, appearance and ethos seemed out of step with Aboriginal culture, Bardon attempted unsuccessfully to involve his class in painting a series of murals on the school walls. Thereupon Kaapa Tjampitjinpa, Long Jack Phillipus Tjakamarra, Billy Stockman Tjapaltjarri and others created the Honey Ant Mural, which inspired many senior men to ask Bardon for painting materials and eventually begin painting in the Men's Painting Room.

Convinced of the groundbreaking importance of what he was witnessing, Bardon made comprehensive photographic, moving film and written records of the artists and the paintings that they produced while he was at Papunya. From his primary research, Bardon wrote three books and made three films that initiated public interest in Western Desert art. In 1988 Bardon was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for his unique contribution to the Western Desert art movement.

Related images

Ad100992
Tim Leura Tjapaltjarri
Anmatyerr c.1929–1984
Yam Spirit Dreaming 1972
synthetic polymer paint on composition board
70.0 x 54.0 cm
Private collection
© artists and their estates 2011, licensed by Aboriginal Artists Agency Limited and Papunya Tula Artists
ARTS002116
Geoffrey Bardon in front of the Honey Ant Mural, Papunya, August 1971
Photo: Robert Bardon
© artists and their estates 2011, licensed by Aboriginal Artists Agency Limited and Papunya Tula Artists Pty Ltd
Ad100413
Charlie Wartuma Tjungurrayi
Pintupi c.1921–99
Old Man’s Dreaming at Mitukatjirri 1972
gouache on composition board
32.7 x 65.1 cm
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Gift of Mrs Douglas Carnegie OAM, 1988
(O.31-1988)
© artists and their estates 2011, licensed by Aboriginal Artists Agency Limited and Papunya Tula Artists
EXHI015398
Timmy Payungka Tjapangati
Pintupi c.1940-2000
Possum Dreaming for children 1972
synthetic polymer paint on composition board
60.0 x 50.0 cm
Private collection
© artists and their estates 2011, licensed by Aboriginal Artists Agency Limited and Papunya Tula Artists Pty Ltd
Ad101012
Tim Leura Tjapaltjarri
Anmatyerr c.1929–1984
Butterfly Dreaming 1972
synthetic polymer paint on composition board
45.3 x 61.7 cm
Private collection
© artists and their estates 2011, licensed by Aboriginal Artists Agency Limited and Papunya Tula Artists
EXHI015537
Johnny Warangkula Tjupurrula
Pintupi/Luritja c.1925-2001
Water Dreaming at Kalipinypa 1972
synthetic polymer paint on composition board
80.0 x 75.0 cm
John and Barbara Wilkerson, New York, USA
© artists and their estates 2011, licensed by Aboriginal Artists Agency Limited and Papunya Tula Artists Pty Ltd
Ad100922
Shorty Lungkata Tjungurrayi
Pintupi c.1920–87
Untitled 1972
synthetic polymer paint on composition board
67.7 x 46.0 cm
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Purchased through the Art Foundation of Victoria with the assistance of ICI Australia Ltd, Fellow, 1988
(O.10-1988)
© artists and their estates 2011, licensed by Aboriginal Artists Agency Limited and Papunya Tula Artists

Connections


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