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Big Paintings from Papunya Tula

5 November 2006 - 30 January 2007

Sofitel Melbourne

Curator: Helen Read, Palya Art

Global Art Projects in association with Palya Art and Papunya Tula Artists presented this select show of large paintings by Joseph Jurra Tjapaltjarri, Charlie Tjapangati, Kanya Tjapangati and George Ward Tjungurrayi.

These four men are prominent senior artists with Papunya Tula Artists, the longest running community-based art company in Central Australia.

Papunya Tula Artists is named after the community of Papunya and a nearby hill, called Tula, a Honey Ant Dreaming site. The company represents Aboriginal artists, mainly from the Pintupi and Luritja language groups. Many of the artists live and work in the communities of Kintore, Kiwirrkura, Mount Liebig and Papunya, located in the desert region west of Alice Springs, in the Northern Territory, extending into Western Australia.

The Papunya Tula Art Movement began in 1971 when schoolteacher, Geoffrey Bardon, encouraged some of the men to paint a blank wall at the school. The resulting murals, depicting traditional motifs and symbols, created a lot of interest in the community, soon many men started painting on canvas and boards. In 1972 the artists successfully established their own company. In the following years the world began to give increasing attention to the new art forms emerging from the desert communities.

Today the artists working with Papunya Tula are recognised for their high standard of work and powerful painting style that derives directly from the artists’ knowledge of traditional body and sand painting associated with ceremony and country.