Sunday, June 19, 2016

Detail of Helicopter Ride with Brooksy to See My Father’s Ngurra (Country), 2011, acrylic on canvas, 101.3 x 102cm by Ken Shepherd, one of a collection of artworks by Warakurna Artists donated through the Australian Government’s Cultural Gifts Program by Wayne and Vicki McGeoch, National Museum of Australia.

An exhibition of unique works from an Aboriginal art movement emerging from the Western Desert will open at the Cowra Regional Art Gallery on Saturday 25 June 2016 commencing at 2pm, guest speaker Andy Greenslade, Curator, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Program National Museum of Australia. The exhibition will be on display until Sunday 31 July 2016.

Warakurna: All the Stories Got into our Minds and Eyes, is a collection of paintings which was produced at Warakurna, a community at the foot of the Rawlinson Ranges in Western Australia, 300 kilometres west of Uluru (Ayers Rock). The works are the product of Warakurna Artists, a thriving art centre in the heart of the Ngaanyatjarra Lands.

The paintings in the Warakurna exhibition are more figurative in style than traditional Western Desert art. The artists from Warakurna use their painting to document their history – the coming of explorers, prospectors and missionaries, building roads, missile testing and their return to their homeland.

“These paintings provide first-hand accounts of significant events which shaped the lives of an Aboriginal community and help all Australians understand their complex history,” said Dr Mathew Trinca, the director of the National Museum of Australia in Canberra.

The Warakurna exhibition was launched at the National Museum of Australia in Canberra, in December, 2012 and is now touring the country.
Western Desert people were among the last groups of Aboriginal people in Australia to have contact with Europeans. Warakurna lay in the middle of the flight path of missiles launched from Woomera in the South Australian desert in the 1960s.

The majority of the paintings in the exhibition were donated to the National Museum by Wayne and Vicki McGeoch under the Commonwealth Government’s Cultural Gifts Program in 2011. The National Museum purchased a further 10 paintings in 2012. All of the paintings have been included in the Museum’s permanent National Historical Collection where they sit alongside early Papunya boards and important works from the Canning Stock Route collection.

A National Museum of Australia Travelling exhibition, supported by Visions of Australia, an Australian government program supporting touring exhibitions by providing funding assistance for the development and touring of Australian cultural material across Australia.

Detail of Helicopter Ride with Brooksy to See My Father’s Ngurra (Country), 2011, acrylic on canvas, 101.3 x 102cm by Ken Shepherd, one of a collection of artworks by Warakurna Artists donated through the Australian Government’s Cultural Gifts Program by Wayne and Vicki McGeoch, National Museum of Australia.

FURTHER INFORMATION:

Cowra Regional Art Gallery
77 Darling Street, Cowra NSW 2794

Brian Langer, Gallery Director
Tel: (02) 6340 2192
M: 0429 072 282

National Museum of Australia
Andy Greenslade, Curator, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Program
Email: andy.greenslade@nma.gov.au
Tel (02) 6208 5325

Hours: Tues–Sat, 10am to 4pm; Sunday 2pm to 4pm

Admission free

The Cowra Regional Art Gallery is a cultural facility of Cowra Shire Council