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Group Exhibition: Jintulu, People of the Sun

February 17 - April 27

Natalie Scholtz and Curtis Taylor, MUTHA CUNTRY (detail), 2023. Mixed medium on linen, 218 x 215cm. Photography: Churchill Imaging. Courtesy: the artists and Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery, Perth.

Jintulu: People of the Sun follows the long shadow cast by colonisation and the bleak legacy of genocide, dispossession and racism that remains etched into contemporary Australia. In this powerful exhibition, Jintulu transforms UWA’s Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery, interweaving ancient stories with more recent experiences of control, displacement and appropriation.

Taken from the Martu language of the Western Desert, ‘Jintulu’ posits Aboriginal Australians as the ‘People of the Sun’, strengthened by and bathed in its life-giving force.

The exhibition juxtaposes new works by senior Walmajarri artist Terry Murray, acclaimed Martu artist Curtis Taylor and Persian South African artist Natalie Scholtz with iconic works from the University of Western Australia’s collections by Valerie Takao BinderIrwin LewisSidney Nolan and Alison Alder.

Walmajarri artist Terry Murray responds to Sidney Nolan’s The snake (1973) – an almost 13-metre-long mural that appropriates Aboriginal faces, totems and knowledge. Murray’s answer is a bold reclamation of the rainbow serpent – a creation figure that has become amalgamated and frequently adopted as a symbol of ‘Aboriginal Australia’. Made on Bunuba Country, Murray’s work is steeped in tradition, balancing a line that marks his work as both contemporary and traditional.

Natalie Scholtz’s exploration of blackness blurs and drips in a sensual, sometimes grotesque, series of figurative paintings. The Persian South African artist invokes the cultural and political symbols of her homeland as she builds a dialogue with works by Yamatji artist Irwin Lewis.

In the centre of the gallery spaces lie two works that anchor the exhibition to key moments in recent Australian history.

Canberra-based printmaker Alison Alder’s Intervention series (2008) draws on her experience working in the Tennant Creek community and speaks to the drastic and devastating impact of the Howard Government’s 2007 Northern Territory Emergency Response.

Sitting alongside is Noongar artist Valerie Takao Binder’s (1947–2019) intimate and deeply personal installation, Dwelling Place/Mia Mia and Yile Boodja/Sandy Country, originally commissioned for Perth Festival 2001. Grounded by the small tin shack or ‘mia mia’ of the title, Takao Binder recreated her childhood home of the 1950s Middle Swan encampment. Told through text, imagery and recordings of Takao Binder’s own voice, Dwelling Place is a stark reminder of the people behind the policies.

In Boong, Curtis Taylor’s unflinching gaze forces the viewer to confront the harsh reality of racism today. Presented in a blacked-out gallery, bull bars hang chained from the ceiling, their headlights flickering intermittently to a barrage of racist slurs in this visceral audio-light installation. The work was first presented at Dark Mofo 2023 and will make its WA premiere in Jintulu.

Held in the wake of the failed Voice to Parliament Referendum, Jintulu is a thought-provoking examination of race relations in a turbulent contemporary Australia that ultimately asks of us: ‘What’s changed?’

Details

Start:
February 17
End:
April 27

Organiser

Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery
Phone
(08) 6488 3707
View Organiser Website

Venue

Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery
35 Stirling Hwy
Crawley, WA 6009 Australia
+ Google Map
Phone
(08) 6488 3707
View Venue Website

Details

Start:
February 17
End:
April 27

Organiser

Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery
Phone
(08) 6488 3707
View Organiser Website

Venue

Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery
35 Stirling Hwy
Crawley, WA 6009 Australia
+ Google Map
Phone
(08) 6488 3707
View Venue Website