John Mawurndjul: A major survey exhibition at the Drill Hall Gallery

John Mawurndjul
9 April–24 May 2009
Drill Hall Gallery, Australian National University, Canberra

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Image: <i>John Mawurndjul, Billabong at Milmilngkan, 2005, etching.</i><br />
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Curated by Apolline Kohen, this is a major survey exhibition of the work of internationally known indigenous artist, John Mawurndjul. Mawurndjul's home-land is near Maningrida in Western Arnhem Land, where he was taught painting by his brother Jimmy Njiminjuma and uncle Peter Marralwanga. His early work consisted of small bark paintings using <i>rarrk</i>, the cross hatched infill associated with moiety identity and potent surface. His imagery usually depicted native species and mythological beings. However, his more recent work has centred on Mardayin themes, a ceremony he was initiated into early in life and connections to important places in his clan lands. Apparently more abstract, these later paintings embody this artist's dedication to finding new ways to express his preoccupation with land and spirituality. As he says:
Following the opening of this exhibition, the forthcoming publication