Irene Entata: Painted ceramics

Three painted terracotta pots currently on display in Gallery 3 at the Queensland Art Gallery (QAG) by Arrernte–Luritja artist Irene Entata depict three distinct periods in Arrernte artist Albert Namatjira’s life, including the sad circumstances of his death. One of the foremost artists of the Hermannsburg Potters, Irene Entata (1946–2014), is known internationally for her…

National Wattle Day: A celebration of a floral emblem

In 1988, the year of Australia’s bicentenary, the Golden Wattle (Acacia pycnantha) was officially gazetted as Australia’s national floral emblem, enjoying a popular acceptance as the national flower long before then. We’ve been celebrating the Wattle for different reasons over the last century, and this year for the first time on Monday 31 August, Brisbane…

The full-bodied vessels of the Hermannsburg Potters document their culture

Ntaria, the former Lutheran Hermannsburg Mission, located about 130 kilometres west of Alice Springs, is now home to the Hermannsburg Potters. The Arrernte people from this area – inspired by the example of their forebear, Albert Namatjira – are famous for their watercolours of the desert interior of Australia. When the Arrernte community took responsibility…

An enduring art tradition: The Hermannsburg School

The Hermannsburg School is an art movement that began at the Lutheran mission of Hermannsburg in Central Australia in the 1930s, inspired by Arrernte artist Albert Namatjira who was born there. Following Namatjira’s early sell-out exhibitions, members of his extended family and his community – most of whom were already making art in some form – became interested in…

Ginger Riley Munduwalawala, Garimala (The Two Snakes) 1988

Albert Namatjira’s lasting legacy

The life and work of Albert Namatjira have left a lasting legacy for artists throughout the country. As a boy in the 1950s, Ginger Riley Munduwalawala, a Mara painter from the Gulf of Carpentaria, met Albert Namatjira. For many artists, Namatjira’s use of non-traditional colours and techniques was a liberating influence and, when Riley took…

Arrernte watercolour by Lenie Namatjira, Glen Helen Station 2010

Arrernte Watercolours integral in the Namatjira story

The Hermannsburg School of watercolour painting is the longest continuing contemporary Aboriginal art movement, spanning the period from the mid 1930s to today. This important movement was established at Ntaria (Hermannsburg) before moving to Alice Springs, 125 kilometres to the east. Here, the families of the original painters have continued the tradition, living and working…