Jean Baptiste Apuatimi<br/>
<em>Jirtaka (Sawfish)</em> 2000 <!-- (recto) --><br />

earth pigments on canvas<br />
93.2 x 126.6 cm<br />

National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne<br />
Gift of The Hon. Justice David Angel through the Australian Government’s Cultural Gifts Program, 2006<br />
2006.18<br />

© Jean Baptiste Apuatimi, licensed by Aboriginal Artists Agency

TIWI, showcasing works from 1911 to the present day, consists of almost 300 works by over 70 artists. The exhibition features 153 works rigorously selected from the NGV Collection and 130 loans of rare historical objects and contemporary paintings from Australian lenders. TIWI avoids a linear chronology, instead divided into spaces that reveal different aspects of Tiwi art and culture. The two principal cultural events for the Tiwi are the pukumani (mourning) and kulama (coming of age) ceremonies. Each Tiwi person is encouraged to participate in customary visual and performative art as part of these ceremonies including the creation of tutini (poles), jilamara (body painting), kawakawayi (song) and yoyi (dance). Tiwi creativity is expressed through random combinations of turtiyanginari (colour), patterns of marlipinyini (lines), kurluwukari (circles) and pwanga (dots).