Post on blogger about Ronald M. Berndt’s book, Australian Aboriginal Art. New York: The Macmillian Company and London: Collier-Macmillan Ltd, 1964.
This is a very interesting post by Steve Thornton about an early book on Aboriginal Art.
Quoted from the post:
This book is the earliest general book on Aboriginal art I’ve been able to find in a Seattle library. (All the pictures in this post are from it). By 1964, the commercial sale of Central Desert paintings in modern media (acrylics on canvas) was starting to get underway, but was still regarded with scorn as a debased product for tourists. There’s none of that in this book; this is all traditional artists depicting traditional scenes in traditional media: ochre and other natural pigments applied to bark or wood or stone with traditional implements.
The post concludes:
I hope to show in some future posts just how wrong he was, and how powerful modern Aboriginal art can be (much more so than the etiolated, often vacuous, culturally starved productions of many civilized modern artists. Much of this art is not sacred, but is mundane and everyday; but it still throbs with power.
We look forward to future posts on the subject.