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Community & Business

8 March, 2023

Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery displaying First Nations artists

Now on display at Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery is the national art exhibition Three Echoes – Western Desert Art curated by writer, artist and activist, Djon Mundine OAM FAHA, showcasing works by 57 acclaimed artists heralding from communities in the Western Desert regions of the Northern Territory.

Artworks in this exhibition have been drawn from the private collection of Andrew Arnott and Karin Schack, and reflect the significant artistic developments and moments in time that contributed to the meteoric rise of the Western Desert Art movement.

These artworks hold special meaning for First Nations peoples, communicating important stories of tjukurrpa (Dreaming) and Country. The relationships within families and ancestors; with flora and fauna; and the unique land formations are the foundations of this art.

Three Echoes – Western Desert Art is an initiative of Museums & Galleries Queensland.

Executive Director, Rebekah Butler said Three Echoes – Western Desert Art features some of Australia’s most
critically acclaimed artists including Billy Stockman Tjapaltjarri, Turkey Tolson Tjupurrula, Warlimpirrnga Tjapaltjarri, Narputta Nangala Jugadai, Long Tom Tjapanangka, Dr George Tjapaltjarri, Gloria Petyarre and Emily Kame Kngwarreye.

“We are proud to have developed and to be touring this stunningly beautiful Western Desert Art exhibition of paintings, prints and batiks and to share these works with Australian audiences,” Ms Butler said.

“Three Echoes – Western Desert Art explores the poetic notion of echoes – how metaphorically and metaphonically we can echo a thought, a sentiment or a consciousness. 

“In the 1970s Australian Aboriginal people from the desert began talking to the world through art, transferring their creation stories of the land and people to canvas.

“Now, in the 2020s, this foundational echo is going back and forth. 

“No longer a one-sided, outward calling, it reverberates multi-dimensionally within wider Australian and global communities,” he said.

Three Echoes – Western Desert Art is on display at Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery until Sunday, 7 May 2023.

 Three Echoes – Western Desert Art Curator’s Talk was
held at the Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery last Saturday afternoon. 

Curator Djon Mundine OAM FAHA spoke about the exhibition and touched on significant moments in the history of Western Desert Art from the early men’s paintings of Papunya Tula, to the artists of Ikuntji, through to the Utopia women’s paintings and batiks. 

For Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery opening hours and more details on the Three Echoes exhibition, visit their website.

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