Indigenous Art - New Art Movement In The

World Today
Prior to 2008 no Aboriginal
indigenous art painting had sold
for more than $800,000. Then in
May 2008 Emily Kame
Kngwarreye’s Earth Creation
fetched $1.056 million at auction.
From there records continued to
be made and Aboriginal Art has
now gained immense popularity in
Europe and the US. However art
investors can still buy Australian
indigenous art and find
collectable artists in the $5,000 -
$10,000 range from reputable
online galleries such as Art to Art.
According to Aboriginal belief, all
life - Human, Animal, Bird and
Fish is part of one vast
unchanging network of
relationships which can be
traced to the Great Spirit
ancestors of the Dreamtime.

Each artist has a Dreamtime
custodianship which maps the
Australian continent, connecting
Aboriginal people to each other
and to the land.
All Aboriginal paintings have an
underlying narrative based on
mythological creation stories
referred to as Dreaming’s (or a
Dreaming in the singular). Yam
Dreaming, Possum Dreaming,
Rain Dreaming, and Fire
Dreaming are all stories that
describe how things came to be as
they are today at specific places in
the landscape.

“This is the significance of
Aboriginal paintings they are,
each and every one, an act of
storytelling, which renews the
world and reaffirms the power of
traditional culture." - Paddy
Carroll Tjungurrayi
Early works were mostly done by
men (but also some women), and
used traditional symbols such as
concentric circles, animal tracks
and heavy dotted forms. Then by
the 1990s, women such as
Kngwarreye broke away from this
stylistic precedent with bold
acrylic paintings that forever
broadening the definition of
Aboriginal painting.
Acrylic paintings serve as a new
form to tell the story of Aboriginal
life. They represent a new context
of interaction between indigenous
and western societies. Through
modern art the Aboriginal people
are able to introduce and express
their culture to the world.

Kudditji Kngwarreye (pronounced
Kubbitji) is the brother of the late
Emily Kame Kngwarreye.

As an Anmatyerre Elder and
custodian of many important
Dreaming stories, his paintings
accentuate the colour and form of
the earth, landscape, sky and
summer heat of his country and
show the iconography of his
ancestral totem, the Emu and emu
waterholes and male ceremonial
sites. In January 2007, Kudditji was
included in the list of Australia’s 50
most collectible artists and declared
one of the top 10 most collectible
Aboriginal artists, based on future
price growth potential.
Minnie Pwerle is one of Australia’s
best known Indigenous artists. Her
commercial art career began in her
late 80’s (only ten years before her
death), when she began painting
bold and deeply mesmerising
depictions of her Bush Melon
Dreaming. She uses circular shapes
to symbolise bush melon, bush
tomato, northern wild orange and
other bushfood.
Another body of work uses free-
flowing and parallel lines in a
pendulous outline to depict the body
painting designs used in women’s
ceremonies. Minnie’s art is
displayed in many public collections
at National and State Art Galleries
across Australia and formed the
basis for a series of designer rugs.

Both Kudditji Kngwarreye and
Minnie Pwerle have substantial
bodies of collectable works. These
are other collectble works by
Indigenous artists are now available
from online galleries like Art to Art.

“I think they [the Australian
aborigines] are more appreciative of
people learning about their culture
through the artwork.” Franchesca
Cubillo, Curator Museum and Art
Gallery of the Northern Territory in
Darwin, Australia.
Ultimately art is to be enjoyed
and appreciated. You can buy
Australian indigenous art for
that purpose or you collect
indigenous art as an
investment. Start with one
piece that you love and go
from there.
Contact us

130 Bulleen Road,
Balwyn North
VIC 3104 Australia
P. 03 9859 6040
M. 0413 945 249