John Mawurndjul

Dates & times

Thu 16 April — Sun 24 May 2009


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 rarrk, 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 Mardayinthemes, 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: “My head is full up with ideas”. Additionally, this exhibition will feature many of his etchings done in the last few years. His work is included in the Musee de Quai Branly, Paris, as well as major international and national art institutions.

Curated by Apolline Kohen

Image: John Mawurndjul, Billabong at Milmilngkan, 2005, etching.


Updated:  16 February 2013/ Responsible Officer:  DHG Director/ Page Contact:  Drill Hall Gallery