Birma
Tess Tipungwuti
Australian (Tiwi, Tiwi Islands), n.d.
Bima, (detail) 2006
Ironwood with natural ochre pigments, h. 57 in.; w. 7 in.
Gift of the Lam Family, 2016.14.37
© artist, courtesy of Tiwi Designs
Photography by Peggy Tenison
Star Dreaming
Alma Nungarrayi Granites
Australian (Warlpiri, Central/Western Desert), born 1955
Yanjirlpirri Jukurrpa (Star Dreaming), 2007
Acrylic on canvas, h. 35 13/16 in. (91 cm); w. 29 15/16 in. (76 cm)
Gift of the Lam Family, 2016.14.57
© 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VISCOPY, Australia
Photography by Peggy Tenison
Ngalyod at Milmilngkan
Seymour Wulida
Australian (Kuninjku, Arnhem Land), born 1969
Ngalyod at Milmilngkan, 2007
Ochre pigments and PVC fixative on stringybark, h. 67 11/16 in.; w. 22 13/16 in.
Gift of the Lam Family, 2016.14.1
© artist
Photography by Peggy Tenison
Lorraine Babui
Lorraine Babui
Australian (Tiwi, Tiwi Islands), born 1951
Untitled, n.d.
Natural ochres and pigments on canvas, h. 46 in.; w. 20 in.
Gift of the Lam Family, 2016.14.46
© artist, courtesy of Tiwi Designs
Photography by Peggy Tenison
Purnululu
Patrick Mung Mung
Australian (Gija, Kimberley), born 1948
Purnululu , 2007
Natural ochre and pigments on canvas, h. 35 7/16 in.; w. 47 ¼ in.
Gift of the Lam Family, 2016.14.50
© 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VISCOPY, Australia
Photography by Peggy Tenison

Of Country and Culture: The Lam Collection of Contemporary Australian Aboriginal Art

February 24 – May 14, 2017

Cowden Gallery

Of Country and Culture: The Lam Collection of Contemporary Australian Aboriginal Art explores contemporary interpretations of artistic traditions (dating back 50,000 years)—from sand paintings, body painting, and grave poles—to demonstrate similar cultural ties to land, heritage, and visual communication. The collection includes a significant number of works by female artists, representing a change from their historical exclusion from the contemporary painting movement in Australia.

The exhibition is organized in four thematic sections—"The Dreaming: Ancestral Beings," "The Land," "Ceremony," and "Mortality"—and presents a diverse range of materials and regional styles—from the intricately painted bark paintings of Arnhem Land, to the pukumani grave poles of the Tiwi Islands, and the boldly colored abstract paintings of the Western Desert.

This extraordinary collection comes to the Museum from May and Victor Lam and their family. The Lams' enthusiasm for contemporary Aboriginal art began when they saw Spirit Country, an exhibition at the San Antonio Museum of Art featuring the Gantner Myer collection of Aboriginal art. May Lam, a long-time Museum Trustee, was inspired to visit Aboriginal communities across Australia with her daughter Dorothy. Through this enriching travel, the Lams amassed an outstanding collection.