Aboriginal art retains its ability to surprise. New artists and styles continually emerge, while many older artists capitalize on their considerable strengths, through increased emphasis on simplicity, clarity, and refinement of style - growing in unexpected yet satisfying ways. This exhibition features recent paintings by Papunya and Utopia artists. From the sensual feminine abstraction of Maisie Bundey and Polly and Kathleen Kngale to rigorous geometric abstraction of Ray James Tjangala and minimalism of Lilly Napangardi Kelley. (PLEASE NOTE: Many more paintings are also to be found throughout the PAINTINGS area of the site!)





Since the founding of the desert painting movement in 1971, Pintupi painting has undergone considerable stylistic evolution. This exhibition examines the development of a highly sophisticated style of geometric abstraction rooted in sacred designs, which in ceremonial contexts, are incised on ritual objects; or etched with fingers as furrows on the ground and then outlined with pigments; or painted on the surface of the body with lines of ochre pigment. In their recent fine art many Pintupi painters have used dots smeared together in linear patterning to echo these sacred designs, or have increasingly dispensed with dots altogether in favor of linear patterns created solely with a brush. Featured artists include: Ronnie Tjampitjinpa, Turkey Tolson, Timmy Payungka, George Tjungurrayi, Warlimpiringa Tjaplaltjarri, and Dr. George.




It's easy to look back at the bark paintings from the 1950's and 1960' painted at communities along the top end as something of a golden age. Many great painters and carvers were active and doing highly sophisticated work that was just barely beginning to be recognized at the time. In West Arnhem Land some of these artists were still actively making rock art as well and there work bears a strong connection to this much older tradition. This exhibition is a salute to the artists of that era, some of who's work was still often unattributed.



Emily Kngwarreye exhibition

Paintings by Emily Kngwarreye



An exhibition of paintings by Emily Kngwarreye (Australian Representative to the 1997 Venice Bienalle). Emily is widely regarded as the most innovative painter to have emerged from the desert painting movement. The evolution of her painting style was nothing short of remarkable. Emily started painting at Utopia at the age of 77 and compressed a brilliant career, comparable to that of other important abstract painters, into eight short years, leaving an impressive body of work behind her. Emily passed away in 1996, but her legacy lives on in the compelling color, vibrant dotting, and spellbinding gestural brushwork of her paintings.

All Australian Aboriginal paintings indicated with green dots For Sale are currently for sale. Prices and photos can be obtained by contacting Songlines Aboriginal Art gallery via e-mail, please be specific and mention the name and inventory code of the paintings. We particularly welcome phone calls in the U.S. (San Francisco) at (415-871-5901). -- David Betz, Curator