Gain an insight into Sally Gabori’s painting technique


Mirdidingkingathi Juwarnda Sally Gabori’s instinct for colour and composition approaches abstraction while conveying a deep connection to her important places and family.

This is the tabletop on which Sally Gabori painted many of her smaller works. Her large-scale works were painted against the eastern wall of the art centre on Mornington Island, facing toward her country. The tabletop gives an insight into the way Gabori worked, its texture revealing the way she mixed wet paints together on the surface of the canvas and pushed excess paint over the edges.

When Gabori painted, she often laughed and sang, reminiscing about the people and places she was painting. When she was reunited with her works in art galleries she would sing to them, reaffirming the links between the paintings and the places and people connected to them through Kayardild language and song.

DELVE DEEPER: The life and art of Sally Gabori

Mirdidingkingathi Juwarnda Sally Gabori, Kaiadilt people, Australia c.1924–2015 / Painting table / Tabletop and paintbrush with synthetic polymer paint / Collection: Beverly and Anthony Knight, OAM / © Mirdidingkingathi Juwarnda Sally Gabori/Copyright Agency / Photographs: M Sherwood © QAGOMA

Acknowledgment of Country
The Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land on which the Gallery stands in Brisbane. We pay respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past and present and, in the spirit of reconciliation, acknowledge the immense creative contribution First Australians make to the art and culture of this country.

It is customary in many Indigenous communities not to mention the name or reproduce photographs of the deceased. All such mentions and photographs on the QAGOMA Blog are with permission, however, care and discretion should be exercised.