EVER PRESENT: FIRST PEOPLES ART OF AUSTRALIA
Tony Albert, Girramay/Yidinji/Kuku-Yalanji peoples, Ash on Me, 2008, National Gallery of Australia, Kamberri/Canberra, purchased 2009 © the artist and Sullivan+Strumpf
Ever Present: First Peoples Art of Australia surveys historical and contemporary works by over 150 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists from across Australia—the largest exhibition of its kind to travel to Asia. Drawn from the collections of the National Gallery of Australia and The Wesfarmers Collection of Australian Art, the artworks show deep interconnections between past and present, as well as extraordinary artistic innovation.
Ever Present is a celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art, while also grappling with Australia’s complex histories. Art emerges as a tool of resistance, asserting deep connections to country, as well as using wit and satire to confront viewers and encourage conversations about critical issues in the world today. The works challenge stereotypes about First Nations people and what defines their art. This exhibition explores key aspects of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander life and culture, arranged thematically to highlight connections to land, community and ceremony, as well as experiences of colonisation and resistance. The exhibition also draws out links with Southeast Asia, connecting First People’s art from Australia to the broader history of this region.
Ever Present: First Peoples Art of Australia is presented by National Gallery Singapore in partnership with National Gallery of Australia and Wesfarmers Arts.