Artitja Fine Art Gallery’s latest offering, CULTURAL CONNECTIONS: The Gift of Story is inspired by the importance of story, and the gift artists give when they choose to share their stories. Opening Oct 30 in South Fremantle, the exhibition runs to Nov 22, and presents the work of over 20 artists from six remote Indigenous art centres whose stories are told through their artwork.

Bright, bold and colourful, the artworks on display express within them a mountain of information, with art being a historically valuable method of passing cultural knowledge to future generations.

Michelle Lewis 170x100cm Ngayuku mamaku ngura ini Makiri

“In our sixteen years of exhibiting, we are continually emphasising the importance of story and the artists’ willingness to share their stories to an eager and growing audience. In this exhibition we want to impart a message of acknowledgement of the gift we are given by the artists who are so generously sharing their story and in so doing are making cultural connections,” explains Gallery Director, Anna Kanaris.

As well as paintings, there are sculptures on display which incorporate found objects, including some quirky offerings in the form of painted truck mud-flaps and a kerosene heater from the Papulankutja artists in Blackstone, WA, a remote community art centre the gallery works closely with.

Angilyiya Tjapiti Mitchell 40x34x30cm Seven Sisters

“I love found objects and these tell of the mining camp days in the town; with the exception of the kero heater which tells of the epic Seven Sisters songline story. These are already being snapped up, and there’s not many of them!”

As part of the exhibition, the gallery is hosting Chief Yarning Officer Ron Bradfield Jr. from Yarns R Us for a Yarn and Q&A event on Nov 21, a Saturday afternoon in the gallery. Ron is a facilitator of cultural conversations across all levels of communities; a storyteller and a maker of things who has worked in and around the arts across remote, regional and metropolitan WA for 15 years.

CULTURAL CONNECTIONS: The Gift of Story is free to the public and opens at 6pm on Friday Oct 30 at a special opening event, for which RSVP’s are essential. The exhibition is open until Nov 22, at Earlywork, 330 South Terrace, South Fremantle, Wednesday to Sunday from 10am to 4pm. Tickets for the Yarn/Q&A are available here.

Cover Image: Section from Dorothy Richards 151x75cm Desert-animals

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