Utopia Art Sydney – Press release:
Then and Now paintings 2002 – 2016
Utopia Art Sydney 4th March – 2nd April 2016
For Immediate release:
Willie Tjungurrayi, now in his early eighties, has been a painter for four
Around 2000, he began a series of trademark images structured by bands
of parallel linear pattern and charged by overlaid dotted lines. These
works evoked the shifting sands of the dunes that stretched to the horizon.
They conveyed the vast space and the subtle shifts within it so familiar to
the artist, for this is his land, his country.
It was these works that made his reputation and placed him amongst the
foremost painters of his generation. The early years in this style produced
some of the most evocative paintings with subtle shifts and a gestural
touch. As time wore on there were fewer works that had this essential
In recent years there has been a dramatic shift in Tjungurrayi’s work. The
lines are gone, replaced with the familiar roundels that are the stamp of
the ‘dot and circle’ movement.
Tjungurrayi has embraced the age old symbols of the Pintupi and
projected them with a bold and forthright style, forming emblematic
statements about place and country. The hand is there, loose in some,
shaky in others, but there is a firmness of line and focus.
Older artists often return to the basics, the elemental, and Tjungurrayi has
certainly embraced this, with these site specific statements.
Willy will not be travelling down for the show, preferring to let his pictures
do the talking.
Willy Tjungurrayi is a member of Papunya Tula Artists Pty Ltd which Utopia
Art Sydney has proudly represented since 1988.
Utopia Art Sydney Director Christopher Hodges is available for interview.
+612 9699 2900