The number of galleries exhibiting works of Aboriginal Art at the 2012 Melbourne art fair was disappointing. Those that did, however, experienced strong interest and good sales of work by a wide range of contemporary and more traditional artists.

Melbourne based Alcaston Gallery reported strong sales from their stand which featured works by Emily Ngarnal Evans, Mirdidingkingathi Juwarnda Sally Gabori and Clinton Nain. We had excellent sales at MAF and also back at our gallery a few minutes’ walk from MAF, reported gallery manager Marie Falcinella.

FireWorks Gallery made the most significant indigenous art sales of the fair selling the epic 165 panel collaborative piece by artists Imants Tillers and Michael Nelson Jagamara, titled Hymn to the night to a private collector in Brisbane for a figure over $200,000 on the eve of the Art Fair.

Other significant sales at Fireworks included paintings by Queensland artist Joanne Currie and barbed wire emu sculptures by Laurie Nilsen which received an overwhelming response that culminated in multiple sales and commissions to Victorian clients. Finally, a major 3.6m length work by artist Dorothy Napangardi was reserved for a public gallery.

Suzanne O’Connell gallery experienced huge interest in the sculptural ceramic and mixed media works that were cleverly elevated on poles to bring the objects to eye level. Created by a number of different artists including Sally Murray, Grace Reid and Debra Murray, a significant number of the works had already sold on the first day of trade.