Western Australian Aboriginal Arts Centres

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Peak bodies and alliances

Aboriginal Art Centre Hub Western Australia

The Aboriginal Art Centre Hub WA works with Aboriginal art centres across Western Australia to assist them to be seen, heard, respected and represented. It is the only Indigenous visual arts peak body based in Western Australia. The hub provides professional support and development for art centre managers and artists. It also advocates for the sustainability and viability of the centres, helping to sustain communities, artists, and their stories. www.aachwa.com.au

Western Desert Mob

Western Desert Mob (WDM) is an alliance of Aboriginal art centres from the Ngaanyatjarra Lands in Western Australia: Maruku Arts, Minyma Kutjara Artists, Papulankutja Artists, Kayili Artists, Tjanpi Desert Weavers, Tjarlirli Art and Warakurna Artists. The alliance reflecst the area’s close cultural, family and creative connections.  westerndesertmob.com.au
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Aboriginal art centres

Bidyadanga Community Art Centre

Bidyadanga, Kimberley region

Bidyadanga Community Art Centre champions emerging artists from Bidyadanga Community, 180km south of Broome. The centre stemmed from a desire to maintain and re-tell stories told by the old people, as well as to celebrate and encourage the younger generation to maintain strong language and culture. It recognises all of the community’s five language groups in their artistic and individual mark-making – from desert to coastal inspiration, mixing desert colours with vibrant and dramatic coastal hues. desertriversea.com.au/art-centres/bidyadanga-community-art-centre


Birrliburu Artists/Tjukurba Gallery

Wiluna, Northern Goldfields

The art is my life and my country. I use the art to share our stories and connect with the young ones”

– Annette Williams, Birriliburu Artist

The Tjukurba Gallery, home of the Birriliburu Artists, is located in Wiluna at the start of the Canning Stock Route. As a collective, the Birriliburu Artists tell their stories through painting.  Artists draw inspiration from the stunning landscape in this region which includes the Canning Stock Route, Gunbarrel Highway, numerous Rock holes such as North Pool and Bowanoo to name just a few. The proceeds from the sale of artworks help to sustain community, artists and stories.  tjukurbagallery.com.au


Kayili Artists

Patjarr, Western Desert region

Kayili Artists is a 100% community owned enterprise for the Ngaanyatjarra and Ngaatjatjarra people located in the small community of Patjarr in the Gibson Desert, 240 kilometres north of Warburton in Western Australia. Kayili Artists are known for their honest and often raw portrayal of tjukurrpa or dreaming in acrylic on canvas and board.

Art is an important vehicle for expressing Ngaanyatjarra and Ngaatjatjarra culture and identity and serves as an important  inter-generational tool for learning in the community. Today the artists of Patjarr are recognised both nationally and internationally for their art.  Kayili.com.au


Kira Kiro Art Centre

Kalumbaru, Kimberley region

Kira Kiro Art Centre is located in Kalumburu Community, the northernmost settlement in Western Australia, 550 km north-west of Kununurra. Formerly Drysdale River Mission, Kalumburu has approximately 400–500 residents from the Wunambal and Kwini language groups. The region is rich in rock art particularly of the Wandjina and Gwion or Kira Kiro figures. Arts practice is grounded in the rock art tradition with contemporary practice also including secular themes of sea life and seasonal flora. Artists paint with ochre pigments onto canvas, paper and bark and are also skilled slate and boab engravers. www.waringarriarts.com.au


Laarri Gallery

Yiyili , Kimberley region

Laarri Gallery is a short picturesque drive from the Great Norther Hwy, 120km south of Halls’Creek. It is a place for Yiyili Community members to paint and show their work. Proceeds from the sale of work is returned to the wider community as well as to individual artists. www.laarrigallery.com


Laverton Outback Gallery

Laverton, Northern Goldfields

Laverton Outback Gallery was established in 2002 to display, promote and sell authentic Aboriginal art on behalf of the people of the Laverton and Western Desert areas. Through art and craft, the local Wongi people share their stories and connections with the lands. www.laverton-outback-gallery.com.au


Mangkaja Arts Resource Agency

Fitzroy Crossing, Kimberley region

Mangkaja Arts Resource Agency is a vibrant Aboriginal owned art centre located in the township of Fitzroy Crossing, in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. www.mangkaja.com


Marnin Studio

Fitzroy Crossing, Kimberley region

Marnin Studio is a social enterprise based at Marninwarntikura Women’s Resource Centre. Local women from five language groups produce exquisite block and screen-printed textile products and hand painted boab nuts. These are contemporary in design but based in the women’s deep knowledge of the local environment, culture and community.  www.mwrc.com.au


Martumili Artists

Newman, Pilbara region

Martumili Artists was established by Martu people living in the communities of Parnpajinya (Newman), Jigalong, Parnngurr, Punmu, Kunawarritji, Irrungadji and Warralong, after cautious observation of other desert artists’ experiences of the art market. The artists and their families are the traditional custodians of vast stretches of the Great Sandy, Little Sandy and Gibson Deserts as well as the Karlamilyi (Rudall River) area. Martumili Artists work with new and established artists, whose work showcases the diversity, integrity and strength of Martu culture.  www.martumili.com.au


Mowanjum Aboriginal Art & Culture Centre

Derby, Kimberley region

The Mowanjum Aboriginal Art and Cultural Centre is a creative hub for the Worrorra, Ngarinyin and Wunumbal tribes, who make up the Mowanjum community 12km outside Derby.  These three language groups are united by their belief in the Wandjina as a sacred spiritual force and the creators of the land. They are the custodians of Wandjina law and iconography.  The centre hosts exhibitions, workshops and community projects, as well as the annual Mowanjum Festival, one of Australia’s longest running indigenous cultural festivals. www.mowanjumarts.com


Nagula Jarndu Women’s Resource Centre

Broome, Kimberley region

Nagula Jarndu (Saltwater Woman) is a social enterprise enabling Aboriginal women to produce distinctive hand crafted textiles and textile products inspired by the unique Broome landscape. It evolved from an Indigenous women’s resource centre which aimed to record oral history and preserve Yawuru language and culture.  It offers training in screen printing and dressmaking, producing fabrics for clothing and home wares, designed and made by local Indigenous artists.  It has a membership of 70 Indigenous women and is governed by 8 Yawuru women Directors. www.nagulajarndu.com.au


Ngurra Arts

Ngumpan, Kimberley region

Ngurra Arts is located at Ngumpan Community, just off the Great Northern Highway 90 kilometres east of Fitzroy Crossing.  It sits on Gooniyandi land close to the boundary with Walmajarri country.  Most of the artists who paint at the art centre come from Walmajarri and Wangkajunga country, having moved north in the mid 1950s from across the desert to the south.  The artists produce acrylic paintings, carved artefacts, screen-printed bags and tea towels, dyed bags using locally sourced plant dyes, seed and bead jewellery, baskets and soaps.  www.kurungalcouncil.org.au desertriversea.com.au/art-centres/ngurra-arts


Papulankutja Artists

Papulankutja, Western Desert region

Papulankutja was established after Ngaayatjarra people walked out of Warburton mission in the 1970s and returned to their land. Papulankutja Artists was established in 2001 and incorporated in 2004 growing out of Blackstone’s women’s centre.  After many years of working through the women’s centre and then the community hall, Papulankutja Artists opened their own Art Studio in 2009.

Papulankutja Artists is known for its innovative fibre work, as well as their painters and carvers.  Fibre Artists from Papulankutja won the 2005 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award with a large woven Toyota. papulankutja.com.au


Roebourne Art Group

Roebourne, Pilbara region

Roebourne Art Group represents around 70 Ngarluma, Yindjibarndi, Guruma, Banjyima, Marthuthunira and Torres Strait Islander artists working in the area around Yirramagadu or Roebourne.

Despite the impact of colonization, and, most recently, the mining industry, Aboriginal culture has stayed strong, with Aboriginal people retaining their links to country and continuing to practice Birrdara law. Artists paint their stories – from “when the world was soft” before creation, to contemporary pieces reflecting the reality of life today in one of the country’s most remote, toughest areas. www.roebourneart.com.au


Spinifex Arts Project

Tjuntjuntjara, Western Desert region

The Spinifex Arts Project was established in 1997 as part of the Spinifex Native Title documentation process. Now, nearly 20 years later, the Spinifex Arts Project has established a solid footing as one of the Western Desert’s most stable and productive arts initiatives. Considerable emphasis has gone into documenting works and recording the cultural knowledge and heritage held by the senior artists from the region. The Spinifex artists paint traditional stories and document kinship responsibilities with acrylic paint on linen, often using a vibrant, unrestricted palette. Spinifex Arts Project Aboriginal Corporation is located at Tjuntjuntjara. www.aachwa.com.au/our-founding-members/spinifex-arts-project


Spinifex Hill Artists

Port Hedland, Pilbara region

The Spinifex Hill Artists (SHA) is Port Hedland’s only professional Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artist collective.  SHA began from a series of community workshops organised in 2008 by independent, non-profit cultural organisation FORM with the support of Irene Coffin, Max George and members of the Mothers Against Drugs group.  The group held their first solo exhibition, ‘Before the Town Got Big’, at the Courthouse Gallery in 2009.  In 2014 the group relocated to the Spinifex Hill Studios. It welcomes beginner, mid-career and established Aboriginal artists and provides access to materials, creative and professional training and arts education to bolster their knowledge and empower their practice. www.form.net.au/project/spinifex-hill-studios


The Minyma Kutjara Arts Project

Irrunytju, Western Desert region

Irrunytju, or Wingellina Community is a small, very remote aboriginal community located 10kms from the tri-state border of WA, NT and SA.  Irrunytju is part of the Ngaanyatjarra Lands and is home to over 150 Anangu (people) who speak primarily Pitjantjatjara language, with some Ngaanyatjarra people also.   It is also the home of Ngaanyatjarra Media, the regional media organisation.

The Minyma Kutjara Project re-establishes Irrunytju as centre for dynamic and culturally important artwork. The Irrunytju paintings reflect the strong relationship between the artists, their country and culture. The artwork brings together contemporary painting techniques and media with ancient visual language and tjukurpa (dreaming). minymakutjara.blogspot.com.au


Tjarlirli Art

Tjukurla, Western Desert region

Tjarlirli Art Centre represents the artists of Tjukurla, a town of 40 people in the remote Ngannyatjarra lands of Western Australia. Families returned here to their homelands in the mid 1980s, bringing Papunya Tula influences from Kintore and Kiwirrkurra. Tjarlirli Art has been recognised for culturally significant work produced by elders such as Nyarapayi Giles, who won the Sir Charles Gairdner Award in 2008 and was a finalist in the Telstra Awards and Joondalup prize in the same year.  Tjarlirli Art has many young artists who are keen to carry on in the same tradition as their parents.  Represented by leading galleries around the country, the artists produce high quality group and solo exhibitions while also supplying popular tourist outlets. tjarlirliart.com


Walkatjurra Cultural Centre

Leonora, Goldfields region

The Walkatjurra Art Project is a strongly focused cultural expression activity. It provides institutional support, training in technique, and preparation of artworks for Aboriginal artists working in the community across the Northern Goldfields region.  The Centre works with artists to develop, market and sell their work.  The centre is also home to the Walkatjurra Rangers and Junior Rangers. walkatjurra.com


Warakurna Artists

Warakurna Community, Western Desert region

Warakurna is a remote community situated on the Great Central Road in the Ngaanyatjarra Lands of Western Australia, among the spectacular Rawlinson Ranges in the Gibson Desert near the Northern Territory border. The Art Centre is fully Aboriginal owned and governed and provides services to artists in Warakurna and near Wanarn.  Warakurna Artists is an energetic, creative and happy place, where men and women, young and old, paint and share Tjukurrpa (traditional law and culture) and contemporary stories. Passing on these important stories to young people is a critical means of keeping culture vital and strong. After school and school holiday Tjitji Creative Program brings the kids  (tjitji) to the studio to paint with their families, learning the Tjukurrpa as well as painting and craft techniques. warakurnaartists.com.au


Waringarri Aboriginal Arts

Kununurra, Kimberley region

It’s a good art centre — this place. We respect and do good things in this Miriwoong country. We all come together here to dance and sing and make things.

Waringarri Aboriginal Arts is a living, growing art centre celebrating the uniqueness of Miriwoong cultural identity. Established in the late 1970’s, in the heart of Miriwoong country at Kununurra in the Kimberley region of northern Australia, Waringarri artists share the importance of their Country and Culture. www.waringarriarts.com.au


Warlayirti Artists

Balgo, Great Sandy & Tanami Deserts

Warlayirti Artists is one of Australia’s leading Indigenous art centres whose artists have a reputation for producing uniquely individual and vibrant artworks. Located in Balgo Community, on the edge of the Great Sandy and Tanami Deserts in northern Western Australia, Warlayirti Artists, represents more than 200 artists across the three communities in the Kutjungka region – Kururrungku (Billiluna), Mulan, and Wirrimanu (Balgo). Warlayirti Artists specialises in fine art paintings, as well as etchings on paper, photography, film and music. www.balgoart.org.au


Warmun Art Centre

Warmun, Kimberley region

Warmun artists are renowned for their use of natural ochre and pigments on canvas, which is integral to the contemporary expression of land and culture as identity for Gija people. The work of Warmun artists’ is an inseparable and celebratory part of Gija culture and country, and draws on traditional Ngarranggarni (Dreaming) stories and contemporary life. Warmun art has a national and international reputation thanks to the leadership of highly successful Warmun artists like Rover Thomas and Queenie McKenzie, George Mung Mung and Paddy Jaminji.  warmunart.com.au


Wirnda Barna Artists

Mount Magnet, Upper Murchison region

Wirnda Barna Artists is located on Badimaya and Wadjarri country in Western Australia’s Upper Murchison region.  The centre supports and represents Aboriginal artists from the communities of Yalgoo, Mount Magnet, Sandstone, Cue, Meekatharra and Yulga Jinna.

Wirnda Barna offers a secure, creative and ethical environment in which artists can meet and work together to share skills and knowledge, connect with their language and culture and generate income through the sale of their visual art.  Artists draw inspiration from the rich landscape, spectacular wildflower season in Spring and important cultural sites of the region including The Granites; Wilgie Mia Aboriginal Ochre Mine and Walga Rock, Western Australia’s largest gallery of Aboriginal rock paintings. www.wirndabarna.com.au


Yamaji Art

Geraldton, Mid West region

Yamaji Art is an emerging Aboriginal art centre in Geraldton in the Mid West, Western Australia. Yamaji Art provides professional services to support and develop Aboriginal artists living in the Lower Murchison region of Yamaji Country with a focus on sustaining cultural maintenance and arts practice while creating economic benefit.  Our artists work in a variety of mediums including painting, textiles, weaving, print-making, design and performance. www.yamajiart.com


Yarliyil Art Centre

Halls Creek, Kimberley region

The Yarliyil Art Centre (pronounced “Yar-Leel”) provides a place for local cultural expression by enabling the ethical production and sale of Aboriginal Art.  The Kimberley Language Resource Centre and the Shire of Halls Creek have both been instrumental in supporting the re-establishment of this Art Centre, which officially opened in November 2010.

Local artists such as: Maggie Long, Bonnie Deegan, Biddy Timbinah, Lulu Trancollino, Barry Demi, Susan Peters, Dianne Rivers, Rowena Morgan, Clayton Bedford and Barbara Sturt paint in a variety of styles, depicting stories and country of cultural significance. yarliyil.com.au


Yaruman Art and Culture Centre

Kundat Djaru/Ringers Soak Community, East Kimberley region)

Yaruman Art Centre is located in the Kundat Djaru Community also known as Ringer Soak, 170km south east of Halls Creek and only 50km from the NT border. The local language is Djaru. The Art Centre’s focus is cultural maintenance and provides support for all cultural activities. Yaruman Art and Culture Aboriginal Corporation is a not-for-profit organisation, owned and operated by the artists themselves. Critically the Yaruman Art Centre is the only source of potential meaningful economic development for the community.


Yinjaa-Barni Art

Roebourne, Pilbara region

Yinjaa-Barni Art consists of a group of talented artists who predominantly belong to the Yindjibarndi language group and whose ancestral homelands are around the Millstream Tablelands in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.In the Yindjibarndi language Yinjaa-Barni means ‘staying together’. This finds its expression in the artists’ enjoyment of working together and in their artworks visual language which provide a rich and meaningful way of bridging cultures.

The Yinjaa-Barni artists have strong individual styles that depict what is dear to their hearts – their country, their culture and the plant life of the region. Older artists have become highly regarded and collected, while younger painters are quickly making their names. yinjaa-barni.com.au

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