About the exhibition:

For some viewers one of the attractions of Yolngu art is that it stems from such a radically different cultural worldview to that of mainstream Australia.

But that can be a turn off as well. If you cannot begin to conceive what forces hold the artist’s world together how can you read the art.

These paintings are about a particular set of coastal estates belonging to the Madarrpa clan of the Yirritja moiety. They connect this clan to its land, its ancestors and to other clans.

Napuwarri’s father Bakulangay was a unique maverick elder/artist with a superb fluid hand whose independence and style saw his work collected by Institutions here and overseas. I felt his loss personally but also lamented it professionally as I assumed that we would never again see that blend of formal knowledge of the law and rampant creativity. Napuwarri surprised by picking up the motifs that his father had originated and developing them further in the same spirit of autonomous entitlement.