Djambawa Marawili - Liyawaday Wirrpanda - Nawarapu Wunungmurra
Annandale Galleries are delighted to announce the new exhibition of the work of DJAMBAWA MARAWILI. The show will take up the large room at Annandale with sixteen new bark paintings. Always evolving, the changes to the work are significant since the last solo exhibition at Annandale in 2005. In between the artist has had a major exhibition at the Sydney Biennale and the Asia Pacific Triennale in Brisbane where he formally opened the Gallery of Modern Art.
Much of the subject matter is similar to previous shows such as the Source of Fire stories of the ancestral being Baru who turned into a crocodile and variations on the theme of the lightning serpent. These are sacred and culturally crucial stories to the Yolgnu people of Northeast Arnhem Land. DJAMBAWA himself is a highly respected ceremonial elder to his own people and rites of passage be it births, deaths or initiations may not occur without his participation.
A major activist for Aboriginal rights he is also an interface between Aboriginal and mainstream Australian culture and has been the chair of ANKAAA (the group of art centres in NT) as well as sat on the Australia Council.
In this exhibition DJAMBAWA MARAWILI is once again addressing similar subject matter to previous exhibitions but the aesthetic form has significantly evolved. Many works are nearly abstract although most contain some narrative/figurative element. They may be likened to western pop art in that the swirling lines and bright colours create a hypnotic effect on the viewer. Well into his mature phase, there is a confidence in the mark making and a shimmer that comes from complex layering. The body of work is over two years in the making and Howard Morphy, a noted expert on his work has characterized this show as perhaps his best to date.
NAWARAPU WUNUNGMURRA is exhibiting in the small room with his unique ?Mokuy? or dancing spirits. This type of work is unique to this artist and has created quite a stir in that similar work won best new media prize at the Telstra awards in Darwin as well as people?s choice award. Somewhat confronting at first glance, in fact these spirits represent dance and are quite benign, yet powerful in effect. Not since the introduction of the mimih spirit sculptures back in the 1960?s has something so new and interesting come out Arnhem Land. The works will be installed in dancing groups that appear to float over the gallery space.
Also in the front room will be bark paintings by LIYAWADAY MARAWILI, who is the wife of Djambawa. While she has featured in several group shows at Annandale it is only over the last few years that she has moved into a mature phase with works that have an instantly recognizable style. They have a soft edged flow and coherence, which is a female touch and are both highly decorative and powerful in terms of significance and story.
Do not miss this opportunity to see the new work by these three important artists from NE Arnhem Land. For further information, press or visuals please contact Annandale Galleries or visit our website.