JILAMARA ARTS AND CRAFTS ASSOCIATION is an incorporated, not-for-profit, Tiwi owned and governed organisation based on Melville Island in the Northern Territory. The Art Centre is the creative and cultural hub of the Milikapiti community, which is situated in Snake Bay on the north coast of the island.
The organisation is open to all members of the local Tiwi community, currently representing around 60 active artists and employing nine regular arts workers. It provides both professional support and access to employment, education and training. The Centre houses the Kutuwulumi Gallery, named after the late Kitty Kantilla and offers a range of paintings, carvings and hand printed textiles for sale. This state-of-the-art building was designed by internationally acclaimed Troppo Architects. It opened in 2012 along with the Murrunungumirri Carvers Shed named after the late Paddy Freddy Puruntatameri and the newly renovated location for the more historical Muluwurri Museum Collection.
The women’s shed, named after acclaimed artist Nancy Henry Ripijingimpi, plays host to a revived screen printing workshop and painting studios. Jilamara artists are nationally and internationally renowned for their unique Tiwi style. They produce contemporary works based on ceremonial body painting designs, clan totems and Tiwi creation stories. The Tiwi palette of red, yellow, white and black are made from natural ochre pigments collected on Country around Melville Island.
Artwork by Jilamara artists are held in major collections around the world including National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Art Gallery of NSW, Sydney, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, Art Gallery of South Australia Adelaide, Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, as well as in collections in the United Kingdom, America, The Netherlands, France, Switzerland and Israel. Current projects can be accessed through social media platforms and artwork can also be viewed and purchased directly through the website or directly through contacting the Art Centre.
Image: Timothy Cook, Kulama, 2019. Locally sourced natural ochres, binder, linen, 150 x 120cm. Courtesy: Jilamara Arts and Crafts.