NOW AWARDING $80,000 IN PRIZES

 

NATSIAA have enriched the lives of generations of patrons and supporters by showcasing work that carries its own unique pulse and power. This work contributes to our deeper-understanding of our indigenous culture and Australian society through the sharing of art and ideas. There is no doubt the NATSIAA now have an unstoppable momentum and a global audience and Telstra is extremely proud to be involved.  -  Andy Penn, CEO Telstra

 

South Australian artists Anwar Young, Frank Young and Unrupa Rhonda Dick have won the overall prize at the 2017 Telstra National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Art Awards (NATSIAA), Australia’s most prestigious Indigenous art prize.

 

Their multimedia collaborative work, Kulata Tjuta - Wati kulunypa tjukurpa (Many spears - Young fella story), was selected as the overall winner of the 34th Telstra NATSIAA from 300 entries and 65 finalists.

 

The winning artwork tells of the ‘Anangu (Central Australian Aborigines)’. Speaking about this work the artists note, “We see many young men from remote communities becoming stuck in a cycle of reoffending and being locked up in juvenile detention centres, like Magill and Don Dale. We are concerned the whitefella way of locking people up isn’t working.” 

 

Frank Young believes that these young men should be brought back to the country to work with senior men to help look after families and communities. Anwar Young and Unrupa Rhonda Dick, with other young men from Amata have been working with their grandfathers on the Kulata Tjuta project, learning to make kulata (spears) in the traditional way. 

 

This year's winning works were selected by an experienced judging panel consisting of curator Emily McDaniel, Director of Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Chris Saines and artist Regina Wilson. 

WINNERS

34TH TELSTRA NATSIAA WINNERS

TELSTRA ART AWARD

Anwar Young, Unrupa Rhonda Dick and Frank Young, Kulata Tjuta - Wati kulunypa tjukurpa (Many spears - Young fella story), 37 spears, digital print, wood, kangaroo tendon, kiti (natural glue), 34th Telstra NATSIAA

 

JUDGES COMMENTS:

Kulata Tjuta is a measured and considered response to an inherently complex and contested subject. The incarceration of young Aboriginal men affects families and entire communities. The kulata (spears) are suspended in a cell-like formation but they also function to protect a young man who looks not to us but to the future. The image is watermarked with cultural designs and the text in language has a sense of urgency and immediacy – words written, erased, edited. This work is a solemn and dignified call to action – to bring young Aboriginal men back to culture, language and country.

TELSTRA GENERAL PAINTING AWARD

Matjangka (Nyukana) Norris, Ngura Pilti, synthetic polymer paint on linen, 34th Telstra NATSIAA

JUDGES COMMENTS:

Ngura Pilti represents a deeply felt experience of country. Using multiple perspectives, it subtly reveals the underpinning watercourses that trail across the land and give it life. Its mark-making is controlled and precise and accounts for the negative space it generates, which results in a scintillating and translucent pictorial effect. 
 

TELSTRA BARK PAINTING AWARD

Nyapanyapa Yunupiŋu, Lines, earth pigments on Stringybark, 34th Telstra NATSIAA

JUDGES COMMENTS:

Lines is a confident painting by a senior artist. Nyapanyapa allows the material qualities of the natural pigments to emerge, resulting in an alternation of translucency and opacity of the pigment. She expertly works across the uneven terrain of the bark, interpreting each contour as a directive for her gestural mark-making.

TELSTRA WORKS ON PAPER AWARD

Robert Fielding, Milkali Kutju – One blood, synthetic polymer paint and ink on burnt and pierced paper, 34th Telstra NATSIAA

 

 

JUDGES COMMENTS:

Milkali Kutju – One Blood deploys the compositional conventions of the political poster. Through the repetitive action of puncturing the paper with a hot wire, light filters through to reveal a succinct and bold statement. The work’s unifying and reconciliatory statement moves past difference and appeals to our common humanity.

WANDJUK MARIKA MEMORIAL 3D AWARD (SPONSORED BY TELSTRA)

Shirley Macnamara, Nyurruga Muulawaddi, aged spinifex, 34th Telstra NATSIAA

JUDGES COMMENTS:

Simple in its form but complex in construction, Nyurruga Muulawaddi demonstrates Macnamara’s technical mastery over her medium. Each blade of spinifex is engineered precisely, manipulated into place and held under tension, seamless and structured. Deliberately omitting decoration, this object speaks of a mature practice honed by decades of experience

TELSTRA EMERGING ARTIST AWARD

Betty Muffler, Ngangkari Ngura (Healing Country), synthetic polymer paint on linen, 34th Telstra NATSIAA

 

JUDGES COMMENTS:

Ngangkari Ngura is comprised of complex interconnected forms that unfurl to reveal linear representations of country. This painting reflects her intimate relationship to place, inspired by her many travels across the landscape as a ngangkari (traditional healer). For an emerging artist, there is a surprising maturity in the controlled rhythm and pictorial dynamism which has been achieved.
 

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WINNING WORKS

Anwar Young, Unrupa Rhonda Dick and Frank Young, Kulata Tjuta - Wati kulunypa tjukurpa (Many spears - Young fella story), 37 spears, digital print, wood, kangaroo tendon, kiti (natural glue), 34th Telstra NATSIAA
Matjangka (Nyukana) Norris, Pitjantjatara, Ngura Pilti, synthetic polymer paint on linen, 34th Telstra NATSIAA
Nyapanyapa Yunupiŋu, Lines, earth pigments on Stringybark, 34th Telstra NATSIAA
Robert Fielding, Milkali Kutju – One blood, synthetic polymer paint and ink on burnt and pierced paper, 34th Telstra NATSIAA
Shirley Macnamara, Nyurruga Muulawaddi, aged spinifex, 34th Telstra NATSIAA
Betty Muffler, Ngangkari Ngura (Healing Country), synthetic polymer paint on linen, 34th Telstra NATSIAA
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SPONSORS

 

Telstra have been the principal sponsor for 26 years. NATSIAA is also supported by the Northern Territory Government and the Australia Council for the Arts, as part of its Visual Arts and Crafts Strategy.

CONTACT

Museum and Art Gallery of
the Northern Territory

GPO Box 4646, Darwin NT 0801

+61 8 8999 8264

info@magnt.net.au
MAGNT acknowledges the traditional owners of country across the Northern Territory and beyond, and pays respect to Elders past, present and emerging.
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