Sharing narratives of country

Sophia ConstantineNorth West Telegraph

An exciting exhibition unveiling the work of artists from two Pilbara Aboriginal art centres will open at Port Hedland Courthouse Gallery this month.

Pujiman, which means bush or desert-born and dwelling, celebrates the sharing of knowledge between senior artists and younger, emerging practitioners.

The exhibition features art in the mediums of animation, filmmaking, photography, drawing and acrylic painting, includes work from more than 20 artists across Spinifex Hill Artists and Martumili Artists.

It will also showcase a film which documents the creative process involved.

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Artist and cultural adviser for Martumili Artists Nola Ngalangka Taylor said it was important to create opportunities to unite older and younger generations.

“Pujiman days are almost gone, but to keep it up, you need to be sharing,” she said.

“There’s so much lost, but we need to keep sharing to keep it alive.”

Mulyatingki Marney.
Camera IconMulyatingki Marney. Credit: Picture: Supplied/ FORM.

The exhibition has been curated by the artists with the guidance of Martumili Artists gallery co-ordinator Amy Mukherjee and Spinifex Hill Studios manager Greg Taylor. Mr Taylor and Ms Mukherjee said the joint venture solidified the collaborative relationship between the two art centres.

“This has been a stellar project for both art centres and every day we are privileged to work with the communities to keep cultures strong,” they said.

“The artists bring us together and feel empowered to move freely between our art centres with the confidence that we have a shared vision and support their practices.

“We’re committed to working together to continue building the reputation of the Pilbara as a powerful cultural and artistic region.”

Emerging Martu artist Cyril Whyoulter shared his thoughts while on the Punmu artist camp.

Cyril Whyoulter.
Camera IconCyril Whyoulter. Credit: Picture: Sophia Constantine

“Anybody can come and paint in Martumili — this for all of us, anybody can paint,” he said.

“Young artists will learn how it was in the pujiman days when they paint.

“They will learn about the country. We must learn, you know, from the old people, so we can hold onto our stories.

“Here they are teaching us young ones.”

The exhibition will be open from 6-8pm on Friday, February 16, and will remain open until Saturday, April 28.

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