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MCA Aboriginal Art: The Maningrida Collection

Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA)

Duration

14 June to 7 October 1994

Guest Curator: Diane Moon

about the exhibition

This exhibition of Aboriginal art came from Maningrida in Arnhem Land, in the Northern Territory. The objects presented were part of a large collection of work by Maningrida artists which the MCA holds in trust on a long-term basis. The exhibition was selected by Diane Moon, Art Adviser for Maningrida Arts and Culture, who chose works over a three year period for inclusion in the collection.

Maningrida is on the coast of central Arnhem Land. The cultural and artistic diversity of the community is evident through the works of art produced there by artists of nine distinct language groups, living in the geographically diverse region around the town. The artists continued to work from a traditional cultural base, using locally available materials almost exclusively, while experimenting with plants and fibres.

The Maningrida Collection at the MCA consists of about 600 works in various materials, including fibre, seeds, shells and feathers. The fibre works were mostly made by women, using traditional forms and patterns that were reinvented. Some traditional pieces, including drag nets, fish traps and hunting bags, were produced collectively by men and women, and used for ceremonial purposes.

The objects in this exhibition reflected the Country of each group of artists: whether they lived close to the coast, on the swampy plains or on the rocky escarpment. The objects also reflected artistic influences that sprung from the availability of materials, an active ceremonial lifestyle, and the inspiration gained from working in close-knit family groups. The weavings revealed both continuity with pre-European traditions and innovations associated with the use of new forms, materials, textures and colours.

Featuring Works from the MCA Collection

F
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
Rosie
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
Therese
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
Unknown
  • Golbordok (honey collecting bag)
  • Golbordok (honey collecting bag)
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag decorated with ochre
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag with bush string handle
  • Sedge grass hunting bag with bush string handle
  • Sedge grass hunting bag with bush string handle
Mabel Anaka-anaburra
  • Jin-gubardabiya (triangular pandanus palm skirt)
England Banggala
  • Jin-gubardabiya (triangular pandanus palm skirt)
Beryl Birnama
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
Johnny Bulunbulun
  • Naniyal (conical pandanus palm sleeping mats)
Tracey Cooper
  • Pandanus palm mat
Dhapalany
  • Pandanus palm mat
Lena Djamarrayku
  • Kunmadj (carved collecting bag)
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
  • Walabi (rectangular fish net)
  • Walabi (rectangular fish trap)
  • Worra (public version of man's ceremonial bag)
Ruby Djinmangga
  • Pandanus palm mat
Elizabeth Gamalanga
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
Mary Gananggay
  • Pandanus palm mat
  • Pandanus palm mat
George Garrawun
  • Golbordok (honey collecting bag)
Nellie Gayalun
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
Phillip Lilipiyana Gudthaykudthay
  • Kunmadj (carved collecting bag)
James Iyuna
  • Kun-matj/ Man-djabu (vine hunting bag)
  • Lorrkon (hollow log burial pole)
Mary Jin-guwaraba
  • Burlupurr (pandanus palm collecting bag)
  • Jin-gubardabiya (triangular pandanus palm skirt)
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
Jack Kalakala
  • Burlupurr (pandanus palm collecting bag)
Anchor Kalunba
  • Kunmatj/Manjabu (burney vine hunting bag)
  • Manjabu (fish trap)
  • Manjabu (fish trap)
Nancy Kaybbirama
  • Kunmatj/Manjabu (burney vine hunting bag)
Margaret Lanbupu
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
Frank Malkorda
  • An-gugechiya (fish trap)
  • An-gugechiya (fish trap)
Minnie Manarrdjala
  • Bamagora (Conical pandanus palm mat)
  • Jin-gubardabiya (triangular pandanus palm skirt)
  • Naberkerra (drag net)
  • Naberkerra (drag net)
  • Napiya (pandanus palm honey collecting bag)
  • Pandanus palm mat
  • Pandanus palm mat
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
Wally Mandarrk
  • Wayarra spirits collecting yams in sedge grass collecting bags
Mary Marabamba
  • Kunmadj (pandanus palm collecting bag)
  • Kunmadj miliken (burney vine hunting bag)
Marrangu
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
Linda Marrawa
  • Kunmatj/Mandjabu (burney vine hunting bag)
Madge Mawanga
  • Pandanus palm mat
John Mawurndjul
  • Ancestral spirit beings collecting honey
Cameron Miliwanga
  • Golbordok (honey collecting bag)
Shirley Minyingarla
  • Pandanus palm mat
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
Elizabeth Mipilanggurr
  • Golbordok (pandanus palm honey collecting bag)
  • Golbordok (pandanus palm honey collecting bag)
  • Golbordok (pandanus palm honey collecting bag)
  • Golbordok (pandanus palm honey collecting bag)
  • Golbordok (pandanus palm honey collecting bag)
  • Golbordok (pandanus palm honey collecting bag)
  • Worra (pandanus palm honey collecting bag)
Mary Mirdaburrwa
  • Pandanus palm mat
Les Mirrikuriya
  • Kun-karnin (digging sticks), Worra (sacred pandanus bags), and the clan water holes which they created
Jack Nawilil
  • Mularra (ceremonial morning star pole)
Ngudel
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
Mary Nilpya
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
Margaret Rinybuma
  • Pandanus palm mat
Mary Walatjarra
  • Bamagora (Conical pandanus palm mat)
  • Golbordok (pandanus palm honey collecting bag)
Happy Wudjarra
  • Dumala (canoe sail)
  • Pandanus palm mat
Jack Wunuwun
  • Fish trap story
Dixie Wurrpamirra
  • Sedge grass collecting bag
  • Sedge grass hunting bag
Kaye Yaibungala
  • Ceremonial yam sculpture
  • Ceremonial yam sculpture
  • Ceremonial yam sculpture
  • Feathered string
Nancy Yalabuma
  • Pandanus palm mat
non-artist
  • Banyan tree root, Ficus virens
  • Bloodroot, Haemodorum coccineum
  • Exocarya scelroides and pandanus palm
  • Fan palm / Sand palm, Livistonia humilis
  • Grevillea heliosperma, frotacea and dyed pandanus palm
  • Kurrajong bark sample
  • (Kurrajong, Brachychiton paradoxum)
  • (pandanus palm)
  • pandanus palm
  • (pandanus palm strips knotted together and dyed purple)
  • purple bean, Macroptilium atropurbureum "Siratro", and Kurrajong bark strips dyed
  • Red apple, Syzgium suborbiculare
  • (sample dyed pandanus palm - orange)
  • (sample dyed pandanus palm - orange)
  • (sample - pandanus palm)
  • sample pandanus palm
  • (strips of pandanus palm)
  • (strips of pandanus palm)
  • (undyed pandanus palm)
  • Vitex sp.