Mirdidingkingathi Jurwunda Sally Gabori<br/>
Kaiadilt c. 1924–2015<br/>
<em>Dibirdibi Country</em> 2008<br/>
synthetic polymer paint on linen <br/>
200 x 600 cm<br/>
Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane<br/>
Purchased 2008 with funds from Margaret Mittelheuser, AM, and Cathryn Mittelheuser, AM, through the Queensland Art Gallery Foundation<br/>
© The Estate of Sally Gabori/Licensed by Copyright Agency, Australia
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Mirdidingkingathi Jurwunda Sally Gabori
Kaiadilt c. 1924–2015
Media Release • 5 Sep 16


The art and life of one of Australia’s pre-eminent contemporary artists will be celebrated in the major retrospective Mirdidingkingathi Juwarnda Sally Gabori: Dulka WarngiidLand of All. More than thirty painted works will showcase the brilliant painting career of Mirdidingkingathi Juwarnda Sally Gabori (c.1924–2015), a senior Kaiadilt woman from Bentinck Island in Queensland’s Gulf of Carpentaria, whose career as a painter emerged and flourished in the last decade of her life. The exhibition will be on display at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia from 23 September 2016 – 29 January 2017.

Tony Ellwood, Director, NGV, said, ‘This exhibition reveals the extraordinary talent of Sally Gabori, a strikingly original artist whose work conveys a deep connection to her place and people.’

Dulka Warngiid – Land of All reveals Gabori’s lifelong connection to Bentinck Island, the home she was forced to leave in 1948 following a prolonged drought which was broken by a catastrophic cyclone, inundating the island. Bursting with colour and energy, Gabori’s paintings appear abstract but tell heartfelt stories of her homeland and family. With no Bentinck Island painting tradition to follow, Gabori’s work demonstrates a radical departure from traditional Aboriginal painting styles and inherited iconography.

Already a master weaver, Sally Gabori began her painting career in 2005 after joining a painting workshop at the local art centre on Mornington Island. Although she had never previously put paintbrush to canvas, she brought to the painting medium an unconstrained contemporary vision, which quickly led to solo and group exhibitions. Her works are now held in major national and international institutions, including Musée du quai Branly, Paris and the Aboriginal Art Museum, Utrecht, Netherlands.

Key works featured in Dulka Warngiid – Land of All include Gabori’s very first paintings, large­scale works created in collaboration with other senior Kaiadilt women, bark paintings made in conversation with Yolngu artist Nyapanyapa Yunupingu, and works on canvas created in her final years.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a major, full colour publication featuring essays by exhibition curator Bruce McLean, and Judith Ryan, Senior Curator of Indigenous Art, National Gallery of Victoria.

A range of items printed with Sally Gabori’s Dibirdibi Country, 2008 are now available from the NGV design store, including bags, t-shirts, pouches and a five-panel cap.

Images for non-commercial use and a caption guide for Mirdidingkingathi Juwarnda Sally Gabori: Dulka WarngiidLand of All can be downloaded from: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/l2yrfl4dfxlbsp6/AABpXHbAlY_aaxu5NClVea7Ja?dl=0

This exhibition Mirdidingkingathi Juwarnda Sally Gabori: Dulka WarngiidLand of All is a Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art Touring Exhibition, on display at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia from 23 September 2016 – 29 January 2017.

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