The Hermannsburg Potters: Pmara - Country, Home, Map - Art Collector

Rahel Kngwarriya, Ungwanaka Ankarta (Frilled Neck Lizard), 2016. Earthenware and slip, 22 x 22cm. Courtesy: the artist and Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne

"The pot is the surface, clay from the earth, ochre from the rock, we scratch the surface with our hands...to what is underneath, what is above...pmara." - Judith Inkamala

The Hermannsburg Potters began as an outstation training project in the late 1980s, where artists learnt to make hand-coiled pottery on the ground under a tree. While clay and ochre had been used in Western Aranda culture for medicinal and ceremonial purposes, there was no prior tradition of pottery - either functional or decorative.

Now master ceramicists in their own right, this new body of work, Pmara - Country, Home, Map refers to the roots of their art practice, inspired by several recent visits to pre-contact sites of significance, where many clays and ochres can be found, including white clay, and healing clay, as well as their signature terracotta.

The Hermannsburg Potters have an extensive career exhibiting widely through Australia and internationally. Their recent commission for the National Gallery of Victoria Our Land is Alive set new benchmarks for their engaging and lyrical pots. This major installation of work was held at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia from 19 December 2015 – 11 April 2016.

Pmara, for the Western Aranda, translates - without distinction - to country, home and map. Pmara sees the artists limiting their palette and their hand-built forms to allow for freely formed textural line work, emphasising the materiality of their much loved Western Aranda country - Pmara.

Alcaston Gallery has represented the Hermannsburg Potters and hosted exhibitions for 25 years.


Exhibition opens: 2-4pm Saturday 7 May 2016
Exhibition closes: 25 May 2016
Location: Alcaston Gallery, 11 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy VIC 3065
Contact: 03 9418 6444
Email: art@alcastongallery.com.au

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