Aboriginal communities in Australia continue the oldest ongoing artistic tradition on earth, producing what art critic Robert Hughes has called the "last great art movement of the 20th century." Contemporary aboriginal works resemble nothing so much as modern abstractionist painting. Yet what looks like abstraction is actually filled with exacting representation of daily existence and sacred meaning. Since such references are not obvious to outsiders, each painting is decoded through documentation. Seattle Art Museum Curator Pamela McClusky describes the unique visual-verbal interplay in Australian aboriginal art.
Dr. Peggy Sanday, Penn Museum Consulting Curator and curator of the Museum's 2004-05 popular exhibition "Track of the Rainbow Serpent: Australian Aboriginal Paintings of the Wolfe Creek Crater," will introduce the speaker. A selection of paintings from "Rainbow Serpent," and a short video from that show, will be on view before and after the talk.
Curator of African and Oceanic Art
Seattle Art Museum