Wik and Kugu Art Centre welcomes new manager Sabine Hoeng. Sabine has over 15 years experience in Indigenous arts and cultural industries, and is a current PHD student examining innovation in early bark paintings from Western Arnhem Land. Sabine was previously a curator of Aboriginal Rock Art at the Museum and Gallery of the Northern Territory and is an examiner under the Protection of Moveable Cultural Heritage Act for the National Cultural Heritage Committee in Canberra.
In other news, the artists at Wik and Kugu Arts Centre have been upskilling in preparation for the launch of their own merchandise and participation in a major national touring exhibition. Mayor Dereck Walpo, from Aurukun Shire Council, has announced the Wik and Kugu Arts Centre will launch a range of hand-printed quality cotton t-shirts, bags, linen aprons and tea towels.
“The designs were created during a workshop with master printer Sam Tupou, made possible by the support of Arts Queensland. Featuring designs representing totems relating to the artists’ clan country, this merchandise will initially be available at the Arts Centre and at CIAF 2019” said Mr Walpo.
The artists’ work will also feature in the IACA member exhibition, Belonging, which is a national touring exhibition launching in 2020. IACA Art development facilitator Edwina Circuitt has been running art development workshops with the artists, mentoring, providing quality materials and assisting them to improve their studio practice, workflows and systems. A highlight has been grinding ochre and mixing it with binders to develop local paint, bearing the striking colours of Aurukun.
In August, Wik and Kugu Art Centre will show an installation of dogs, Songline of the Dog, making reference to the dog story lines across the country from Cape York to Arnhem Land, and Tiwi Islands to the top of the Northern Territory. This will show in Salon19 at Charles Darwin University.
In other news, Wik and Kugu Arts Centre has been invited to present a selection of works at the Sydney Contemporary, International Art Fair from 12-15 September. Alair Pambegan’s work of Kalban (Flying fox story) was recently part the 9th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art at the Queensland Gallery of Modern Art. Later in the year, Pambegan will present a large, three-dimensional installation of 34 painted carvings relating to the Bonefish Story Place (Walkaln-aw) at the Cairns Art Gallery biennial exhibition ARTNOW FNQ 2019.
Main image credit: Gary Namponan painting during the Belonging Workshop at Wik & Kugu Art Centre in Aurukun, February 2019. Image: IACA