REVIEW OF THE 2017 NATIONAL ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER ART AWARDS

Australia's most eminent Indigenous art awards, the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards (NATSIAA), were without reserve, breathtaking.

Artists from the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands swept the field being awarded four of the six categories with their stunning and tremendously moving works.

Interestingly, both delicate and extremely intricate black and white works in various media appeared to dominate in this year's selection of 66 finalists from over 300 entries. Congratulations to all the finalists, such exceptional work.

Here are some images of the award winning works and our personal favorites with a special mention to Robert Fielding , winner of the 'Works on Paper' award with 'Milkali Kutju - One Blood' who moved us so profoundly with his work, his message and grace.

Currently on exhibit at the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory in Darwin through to the 26th of November 2017.

 

 TELSTRA AWARD WINNER:   Kulata Tjuta - Wati kulunypa tjukurpa  (Many Spears - Young fella story) by Anwar Young, Unrupa Rhonda Dick and Frank Young  - Pitantjatjara, Amata, South Australia. Medium : 37 spears, digital print, wood, kangaroo tendon, kiti (natural glue)   Tjanangka ngaranyi ngura, jailangka wiya -  Standing behind culture not behind bars - Wati kulunypa tjuta patingka tjarpanyi jailangka. A strong statement literally and visually for cultural and community support for troubled young men in remote communities as opposed to ineffective incarceration in Juvenile Detention Centres.

TELSTRA AWARD WINNER:  Kulata Tjuta - Wati kulunypa tjukurpa (Many Spears - Young fella story) by Anwar Young, Unrupa Rhonda Dick and Frank Young  - Pitantjatjara, Amata, South Australia. Medium : 37 spears, digital print, wood, kangaroo tendon, kiti (natural glue)

Tjanangka ngaranyi ngura, jailangka wiya - Standing behind culture not behind bars - Wati kulunypa tjuta patingka tjarpanyi jailangka. A strong statement literally and visually for cultural and community support for troubled young men in remote communities as opposed to ineffective incarceration in Juvenile Detention Centres.

 GENERAL PAINTING AWARD WINNER:   Ngura Pilti  by Matjangla (Nyukana) Norris  - Pitjantjatjara, Fregon, South Australia.  Synthetic polymer paint on linen.                                            'Ngura Pilti'  - the Country is very dry.

GENERAL PAINTING AWARD WINNER:  Ngura Pilti by Matjangla (Nyukana) Norris  - Pitjantjatjara, Fregon, South Australia.  Synthetic polymer paint on linen.                                           'Ngura Pilti' - the Country is very dry.

 WORKS ON PAPER AWARD WINNER :  Milkali Kutju - One Blood  by Robert Fielding - Western Arrente/Yankunytjatjara, Port Augusta, South Australia. Synthetic polymer paint and ink on burnt and pierced paper.  "My work  Milkali Kutju  - meaning on blood in Pitjantjatjara language - is a call for unity, for an end to racial prejudice. I'm asking viewers to look beneath the surface and see that our differences are only skin deep. We all have blood running through our veins."

WORKS ON PAPER AWARD WINNER : Milkali Kutju - One Blood by Robert Fielding - Western Arrente/Yankunytjatjara, Port Augusta, South Australia. Synthetic polymer paint and ink on burnt and pierced paper.  "My work Milkali Kutju - meaning on blood in Pitjantjatjara language - is a call for unity, for an end to racial prejudice. I'm asking viewers to look beneath the surface and see that our differences are only skin deep. We all have blood running through our veins."

 BARK PAINTING AWARD WINNER :  Lines   by Nyapanyapa Yunupingu - Yolngu, Birritjmi, Northern Territory. Earth pigment on Stringybark. This work is representative of ceremonial body and face markings. 

BARK PAINTING AWARD WINNER : Lines  by Nyapanyapa Yunupingu - Yolngu, Birritjmi, Northern Territory. Earth pigment on Stringybark. This work is representative of ceremonial body and face markings. 

 WANDJUK MARIKA MEMORIAL THREE DIMENSIONAL AWARD WINNER :  Nyurruga Muulawaddi  by Shirley MacNamara - Indjalandji-Dhidhanu/Alyawarre, Mt Guide Station, Queensland. Aged woven spinifex.

WANDJUK MARIKA MEMORIAL THREE DIMENSIONAL AWARD WINNER : Nyurruga Muulawaddi by Shirley MacNamara - Indjalandji-Dhidhanu/Alyawarre, Mt Guide Station, Queensland. Aged woven spinifex.

 EMERGING ARTIST AWARD WINNER :  Ngangkari Ngura  (Healing Country) by Betty Muffler - Pitjantjatjara, Indulkana, South Australia. Synthetic polymer paint on linen. Betty Muffler is a survivor of the nuclear bomb testing conducted by the British on her country at Maralinga in the 1950's. Not all of her family did survive. This work depicts the good and healing parts of her country

EMERGING ARTIST AWARD WINNER : Ngangkari Ngura (Healing Country) by Betty Muffler - Pitjantjatjara, Indulkana, South Australia. Synthetic polymer paint on linen. Betty Muffler is a survivor of the nuclear bomb testing conducted by the British on her country at Maralinga in the 1950's. Not all of her family did survive. This work depicts the good and healing parts of her country

  Tjala Tjukurpa  - Honey ant story by Yaritji Young - Pitjantjatjara, Amata, South Australia. Synthetic polymer paint on linen.

Tjala Tjukurpa - Honey ant story by Yaritji Young - Pitjantjatjara, Amata, South Australia. Synthetic polymer paint on linen.

 Cultural Reflections - Ever present #1 by Kent Morris - Barkindji, Melbourne, Victoria. Digital print on rag paper

Cultural Reflections - Ever present #1 by Kent Morris - Barkindji, Melbourne, Victoria. Digital print on rag paper

  Tjulpu Wiltja Tjuta  (Birds nests) by Iluwanti Kean and Mary Katajuku Pan - Pitjantjatjara/Yankunytjatjara, Amata, South Australia. Natural tjupi grass, raffia, wool, hair, feathers, wire and audio.

Tjulpu Wiltja Tjuta (Birds nests) by Iluwanti Kean and Mary Katajuku Pan - Pitjantjatjara/Yankunytjatjara, Amata, South Australia. Natural tjupi grass, raffia, wool, hair, feathers, wire and audio.

  Ancestral women at Marrapinti  by Yukultji Napangarti - Pintupi, Kiwirrkurra, Western Australia. Synthetic polymer paint on linen.

Ancestral women at Marrapinti by Yukultji Napangarti - Pintupi, Kiwirrkurra, Western Australia. Synthetic polymer paint on linen.

  These birds  by Marlene Rubuntja - Arrente, Alice Springs, Northern Territory. Metal, dyed woollen blankets, wool, cotton, emu feathers.

These birds by Marlene Rubuntja - Arrente, Alice Springs, Northern Territory. Metal, dyed woollen blankets, wool, cotton, emu feathers.

 Byku by Gunybi Ganambarr - Yonlgu, Ganggan, Northern Territory. Earth pigments on Stringybark hollow log.

Byku by Gunybi Ganambarr - Yonlgu, Ganggan, Northern Territory. Earth pigments on Stringybark hollow log.

  Jitirr  by Ngarralja Tommy May - Walmajarri, Mindi Rardi, Western Australia. Acrylic pen and enamel paint on metal.

Jitirr by Ngarralja Tommy May - Walmajarri, Mindi Rardi, Western Australia. Acrylic pen and enamel paint on metal.

  Ancestral women at Marrapinti  by Yalti Napangati - Pintupi, Kiwirrkurra, Western Australia. Synthetic polymer paint on linen.

Ancestral women at Marrapinti by Yalti Napangati - Pintupi, Kiwirrkurra, Western Australia. Synthetic polymer paint on linen.

  Matriline - Yinarr - Old girls of the south east  by Penny Evans - Gamilaraay, Lismore, New South Wales. Ceramis, raffia, wire, polypropylene, plastic, bamboo.

Matriline - Yinarr - Old girls of the south east by Penny Evans - Gamilaraay, Lismore, New South Wales. Ceramis, raffia, wire, polypropylene, plastic, bamboo.

  Tiwi Jamutakari, Kumunupunpari, Tiyari  by Timothy Cook, Tiwi, Milkapiti, Northern Territory. Natural ochres on linen

Tiwi Jamutakari, Kumunupunpari, Tiyari by Timothy Cook, Tiwi, Milkapiti, Northern Territory. Natural ochres on linen

  Namorrodo - Shooting star  by Bob Burruwal - Rembarrnga, Ankabadbirri, Norther Territory. Pandanus with ochre pigment, paperbark, feathers and fixative.

Namorrodo - Shooting star by Bob Burruwal - Rembarrnga, Ankabadbirri, Norther Territory. Pandanus with ochre pigment, paperbark, feathers and fixative.

  Tingari men at Yunala  by Ray James Tjangala - Pintupi, Kiwirrkurra, Western Australia. Synthetic polymer paint on linen.

Tingari men at Yunala by Ray James Tjangala - Pintupi, Kiwirrkurra, Western Australia. Synthetic polymer paint on linen.

  Yarrinya  by Barayuwa Mununggurr, Yolngu, Yirrkala, Northern Territory. Earth pigments on Stringybark

Yarrinya by Barayuwa Mununggurr, Yolngu, Yirrkala, Northern Territory. Earth pigments on Stringybark

 Pregnant yawkyawk by Anniebell Marrrngnamarrnga - Kunwinjku, Maningrida, Northern Territory. Pandanus with natural pigments.

Pregnant yawkyawk by Anniebell Marrrngnamarrnga - Kunwinjku, Maningrida, Northern Territory. Pandanus with natural pigments.