– Highlights

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Exhibition

Tatsuo Miyajima

03 Nov - 05 Mar

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Mca Collection

MCA Collection: Today Tomorrow Yesterday

01 Sep - 31 Aug

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Exhibition

Primavera at 25: MCA Collection

19 Dec - 19 Mar

– Learning Events

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Pop-Up Bar

Cherry Blossom Bar

27 Jan, 4.00pm, Ground Floor: Outdoor Terrace

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Workshop

Understanding Mindfulness Workshop

28 Jan, 12.30pm, Level 2: Seminar Room

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Talk

Meet the Artists

01 Feb, 6.30pm, Level 2: Veolia Lecture Theatre

– News from inside the MCA

Sponsoring art: Citi connects Miyajima with Sydney

Citi’s Itay Tuchman tells us why he is a proud sponsor of artist Tatsuo Miyajima and MCA. more

Simon Yates: Brain Scapes

Primavera at 25: MCA Collection curator Megan Robson gives an insight into Simon Yates exhibiting artwork Brain Scapes (2006/2016). more

Family wall labels are here

Our Collection galleries now display family wall labels, created in consultation with young MCA visitors more

– Spotlights from the collection online

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MCA Collection

Works from the MCA Collection

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Collection Artist Interviews

Watch our latest interviews in the MCA Video Portal

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Joint acquisitions by MCA and Tate

The Program promotes Australian art globally, helping Australian artists reach new audiences.

Being Tiwi

Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA)

Duration

21 Dec 2015 to 21 Feb 2016

Artists:

Timothy Cook, Raelene Kerinauia, Maria Josette Orsto, Eddie Puruntatameri, Nina Puruntatameri, Cornelia Tipuamantumeri, Giovanni Tipungwuti, Bede Tungutalum, Pedro Wonaeamirri

Curators:

Natasha Bullock & Keith Munro

About the exhibition

Being Tiwi bought together prints and paintings by nine artists from Australia’s Tiwi Islands. Located to the north of Darwin in the Northern Territory at the juncture of the Arafura and Timor seas, Bathurst and Melville islands are home to the Tiwi people – the fiercely independent, culturally unique, traditional owners of the land. ‘Tiwi’ loosely translates as ‘one people’, and island culture is characterised by a shared belief in the need to keep Tiwi customs alive.

The artworks in Being Tiwi highlighted how contemporary ideas and visual forms connect to and express transformations in culture. Tiwi motifs and designs (known as Jilamara) draw on a range of influences, the most important being the body painting which accompanies two significant Tiwi ceremonies: Kulama, which celebrates life, and Pukumani, a complex funereal ritual.

Bridging the past and the present, Being Tiwi included the first prints produced on the islands in 1969 along with work recently acquired for the MCA Collection and new work commissioned specifically for the exhibition. From the intricate to the gestural, and using yellow, red and white ochres sourced from the islands’ environs, these artworks highlighted the distinctiveness of Tiwi iconography.

Featuring Works from the MCA Collection

Timothy Cook
Maria Josette Orsto
Eddie Puruntatameri
  • Jilarti and Kwarikwaringa (bird with butterfly)
  • Jilarti (two cranes)
  • Jipwajirringa (wallaby)
  • Pirimurwu (sitting man)
  • Taringa and Wuruwataka (snake and bush rat)
  • Yirrikapayi and Jarrikalani (crocodile and turtle)
Nina Puruntatameri
Giovanni Tipungwuti
  • Arlipiwura (pelican)
  • Arlipiwura (pelican)
  • Arntongi (Jabiru in flight)
  • Jilamara (body design)
  • Jilamara (body design)
  • Jilamara (body design)
  • Jilarti (Jabiru)
  • Jilarti (pelican)
  • Jilarti (water bird)
  • Kuntamani (two frill-necked lizards)
  • Kwarikwaringa (butterfly)
  • Kwarikwaringa (butterfly)
  • Minga (man spearing fish)
  • Tuwayini (two men fishing)
  • Warntarrunga (wasp)
Bede Tungutalum
  • Arntongi (Jabiru in flight)
  • Irikipayi (crocodile man)
  • Jilarti and Muputi (crane and fish)
  • Jilarti (Jabiru)
  • Jilarti (three birds in flight)
  • Jilarti (water bird)
  • Kirimpika (crab)
  • Marantuwungini (dugongs)
  • Murtangkala
  • Murtati and Taringa (eagle and snake)
  • Murtati (eagle)
  • Pirranjinga, Muputi and Jarrikalani (eel, fish and sea turtle)
  • Taringa and Kawarri (two snakes and a goanna)
  • Taringa and Wuruwataka (snake and bush rat)
  • Turtini
  • Wampaka
  • Wampaka
  • Wurrikiliki (goose)
  • Yirrikapayi and Jarrikalani (crocodile and turtle)
  • Yirrikapayi (man spearing crocodile)
  • Yoyi (dancing man)
  • Yoyi (dancing man)
  • Yoyi (dancing man)
Unknown
  • Kirluwarringa (stingray)
Pedro Wonaeamirri
  • Jilamara
  • Pwoja-Pukumani Body Paint Design
  • Yirrinkrupwoja (Body Painting #1)
  • Yirrinkrupwoja (Body Painting #2)
  • Yirrinkrupwoja (Body Painting #3)
  • Yirrinkrupwoja (Body Painting #4)