Port Hedland Courthouse Gallery : Exhibitions : Martumili

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16 Edgar Street,
PO Box 856,
Port Hedland WA 6721

(08) 9173 1064
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Martumili

04 April 2008 to 21 June 2008


Stunning New Works from the Martumili Artists of the Western Desert

Martumili Artists is the art enterprise of the Martu people whose communities span the Great Sandy, Little Sandy and Gibson Deserts in Western Australia's remote east Pilbara region. In country marked by desert and salt lakes, Martu people weave their footprints from the Percival Lakes in northern Western Australia, Lake Disappointment in the south and across the iconic Canning Stock Route to the east. It is this country that links the Martu, and through which the lines of language, family and Tjukurrpa are threaded together. Connecting these immense swathes of land are the related languages of the Martu - Manyjilyjarra, Kartujarra, Putijarra and Warnman - with Martumili Artists working with Martu artists in all six communities dispersed through this remote but stunning country.

This is country whose remoteness sustains Martu identity, creates distinctiveness and nurtures unique talent. A relatively new art enterprise (officially forming in 2006 after several years of negotiation and development), Martumili Artists make magic with the visual form. The work created by this nest of 40 professional artists is experimental, contemporary and suffused with Martu experience - both cultural traditions and modern reinterpretations of tradition. The works created by Martu artists are visually compelling. Encompassing both two and three dimensional mediums (painting, fibre, wood), Martumili works reach out to the viewer and captivate. Canvases are arresting hybrids of intense colour that are luminous and thought-provoking. Finely-wrought baskets and other woven forms show technical and stylistic innovation and a modern, refined confidence.