NATSIAA 2020 Finalists Announced

67 finalists have been selected for Australia’s longest running Indigenous art award.

Words: Donnalyn Xu

The 2020 Telstra Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards (NATSIAA) has announced its line-up of finalists. Out of the 238 entries submitted by First Nations artists, 67 have been selected (see full list below).

As Australia’s longest running prize for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists, NATSIAA plays an important role in supporting and showcasing the art of emerging and established Indigenous artists. This year features 11 emerging artists who have practiced for less than five years. With finalists from urban areas and remote communities across the nation, NATSIAA uplifts Indigenous voices, and showcases their art on a national and global scale.

“Whatever the style, whatever the medium, there is an extraordinary power and beauty in Indigenous art and given the times we are in, it gives us a chance to be inspired and helps us to see the world differently,” says Telstra CEO Andrew Penn.

The artists for this year were selected by Larrakia/Wadaman/Karajarri Curator Tina Baum, Wadjarri/Nhanda/Nyoongar Curator Glenn Iseger-Pilkington and the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory (MAGNT) Curator of Aboriginal Art and Material Culture Luke Scholes.

“It was incredibly reaffirming to see the unique ways people are telling stories, the ways people are reinventing traditional forms and materials and the generosity of our community in sharing the most personal, and often challenging stories, through their diverse practices,” says Baum.

NATSIAA is a celebration of the diversity and richness of contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art practice. More significantly, it is an opportunity to connect and support Indigenous artists and art centres with a national audience. “Staying connected during this time of self-isolation is so important,” says Penn. “There is no better way to do so than through the medium of this incredible art.”

There will be no public event on the MAGNT lawns due to COVID-19. MAGNT are working with Telstra to try and reimagine the Telstra NATSIAA this year, and ensure that the artwork will still be accessible to a national audience. 

Image: 2019 Telstra NATISAA Awards installation view

2020 NATSIAA Finalists:

Adrian Jangala Robertson

Amala Groom

Angkaliya Curtis

Annette Lormada

Barayuwa Munuŋgurr

Ben Ward

Bessie Daylight

Betty Kuntiwa Pumani and Marina Pumani Brown

Betty Muffler

Billy Yunkurra Atkins

Cassie Leatham
Kent Morris

Cecilia Umbagai

Cynthia Burke

Dallas Smythe

Deborah Wurrkidj

Dhuwarrwarr Marika

Djerrkŋu Yunupiŋu

Don Nakidilinj Namundja

Doreen Jinggarrabarra

Doris Bush Nungarrayi

Dylan Sarra

Garawan Waṉambi

Gary Lee

Ginger Wikilyiri

Gutiŋarra Yunupiŋu

Hubert Pareroultja in collaboration with Mervyn Rubuntja, Vanessa Inkamala.

Illiam Nargoodah

Iluwanti Ken

Jack Green

Jason Lee

Jenna Lee

Jimmy K Thaiday – Torres Strait Islands

Joanne Napangardi Wheeler

John Prince Siddon

Keith Stevens

Lance James

Leah Brady

Leah Umbagai

Mabel Juli

Mark Morris

Marrnyula Munuŋgurr

Mary Dhapalany

Mulkuṉ Wirrpanda

Ngarralja Tommy May

Noŋgirrŋa Marawili

Nyunmiti Burton

Nyurpaya Kaika Burton

Paul Namarinjmak Nabulumo

Peggy Griffiths

Peter Mungkuri and Alec Baker

Raelene Kerinauia Lampuwatu

Rerrkirrwaŋa Munuŋgurr

Robert Fielding

Rosie Tarco King

Ryan Presley

Sammy Lyons

Siena Mayutu Wurmarri Stubbs
Titus Nganjmirra

Sonia Kurarra

Tiger Yaltangki

Timo Hogan

Tjala Women’s Collaborative

Wawiriya Burton

Yalanba Waṉambi

Yukultji Napangati


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