Tjuritja Nana Mara to Paris
From the good Tjuritja (West MacDonnell Ranges) to Paris
6 Nov 2017 - 6 January 2018
Galerie IDAIA Paris
An unprecedented exhibition in France, devoted to the Central Desert watercolour movement established in the 1930s by one of Australia’s most prominent artists, Albert Namatjira (1902-1959).
From the colourful hills of West MacDonnell Ranges in Arrernte country in Central Australia to Paris, the exhibition Tjuritja Nana Mara to Paris brings together an outstanding selection of artworks by the Namatjira Artists.
As descendants of painter Albert Namatjira (28 July 1902 – 8 August 1959), who was the first Aboriginal artist to achieve great success in 1930 Australia, the contemporary Aboriginal watercolour artists continue the pictorial tradition they inherited from their ancestor Albert. Originally inspired by western-style landscapes, but simultaneously infused with the intrinsic and intimate connection Albert and his family had – and still have – with the land they depicted, the creations of the Hermannsburg movement have developed into authentically unique artistic explorations within the broader Australian Indigenous art scene.
Co-curated with the celebrated artists Ivy Pareroultja and Mervyn Rubuntja, the exhibition not only offers French visitors the opportunity to (re)discover the Central Desert watercolourists’ works, but also to learn more about the Namatjira artists and community’s hi/story. It intends to raise awareness of the current issue with Albert Namatjira’s copyright, which could not be safeguarded for his family after his death, and that they are today striving to regain.
The exhibition showcases the works of 16 artists, with 25 superb watercolours and a selection of limited-edition wearable art creations including a magnificent circle skirt and delicate silk scarves. Presenting vibrant artworks that embrace experimentation and innovation, whilst keeping culture and traditions strong, the exhibition is a great testimony to the legacy of Albert Namatjiira and has been timed to coincide with the release of the new documentary film Namatjira Project. As part of a much broader, long-term campaign to support the Namatjira family’s cause, the film recounts the story of iconic Australian Indigenous artist Albert Namatjira and documents his children, grand-children and community’s struggle.
A special screening of the documentary, followed by a panel discussion with Australian Indigenous artists, academics and international experts, will be hosted by the Australian Embassy as part of the exhibition opening events.
Organised by IDAIA and Iltja Ntjarra – Many Hands Art Centre, in partnership with the Australian Embassy in France, the exhibition is accompanied by public and educational programs, educational resources and a dedicated bilingual exhibition catalogue.
Exhibition Dates and Venue:
6 November 2017 – 6 January 2018
Galerie IDAIA Paris
73 rue Ampere – Paris 17e – France