Whether sculpture, video, installation, works on paper or painting, the Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards (NATSIAA) annually presents innovative work created by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists across the country. Now in its 36th year, the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory (MAGNT) is again providing a platform for Indigenous artists to display the best of their practice, testing forms and aesthetic ideas.
The 2019 NATSIAA includes 68 emerging and established artists from almost every state and territory. “It captures a snapshot each year of the best work taking place by Aboriginal artists around the country,” explains Marcus Schutenko, director of MAGNT.
For almost four decades the NATSIAA exhibition has presented artistic and cultural evolutions within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art. Through this, the themes and ideas explored have become as varied as the artistic forms that are realised within: there are representations of ancestral stories, investigations into historical and contemporary political and social issues, personal forays, and formal explorations.
Yolŋu artist Djambawa Marawili AM, from the remote homeland of Yilpara in East Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory, has been announced as the winner of the 36thTelstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards (NATSIAA).
Marawili’s artwork, Journey to America 2018, made from natural pigments on stringy bark, was selected as the overall winner at the 36thTelstra NATSIAA from more than 280 entries and 68 talented finalists.
Journey to America 2018 reflects on Marawill’s recent extensive travels to the United States of America promoting Yolŋu philosophy. The spirit of these ideas flow like sacred Maḏarrpa saltwater and/or fire between the two countries.
The 2019 category winners are:
Telstra General Painting Award
Kaylene Whiskey,Indulkana, SA
Seven Sistas 2018
Telstra General Works on Paper Award
Nyaparu (William) Gardiner (dec), South Hedland, WA
Our Old People 2018
Telstra Bark Painting Award
Noŋgirrŋa Marawili, Yirrkala NT
Lightning strikes 2018
Wandjuk Marika Memorial 3D Award (Sponsored by Telstra)
Malaluba Gumana, Yirrkala NT
Rainbows in the Lilies 2018
Telstra Multimedia Award
Gutiŋarra Yunupiŋu,Yirrkala, NT
Gurrutu’mi Mala – My connections 2019
Telstra Emerging Artist Award
Titus Nganjmirra,Gunbalanya, NT
Queen Elizabeth 2019
This article was edited to include the announcement of the winners of the 2019 Telstra National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Art Awards, announced in Darwin 9 August, 2019.