Acclaimed Australian Aboriginal Artist Warlimpirrnga Tjapaltjarri Makes his U.S. Solo Debut
Hanging on the walls of Salon 94’s whitewashed Bowery gallery,
Warlimpirrnga was first introduced to painting at Papunya Tula Artists, a community arts center dedicated to fostering and preserving Aboriginal culture through contemporary art. It is here that the artist learned to paint and subsequently created his first body of work. In 1988, his first show at Melbourne’s Gallery Gabrielle Pizzi earned him national acclaim—catapulting him into the global art-world spotlight. He’s been there ever since.
“Maparntjarra,” which means ritual healer, is Warlimpirrnga’s first solo gallery show in the U.S. and coincides with his inclusion in “No Boundaries: Aboriginal Australian Contemporary Abstract Painting” at Perez Art Museum Miami. Rhythmic and twisting, his dizzying compositions, primarily composed of dotted lines, appear to be in constant motion. The effect is at once challenging and mesmerizing—like detecting a wave of heat rising from hot pavement. Different from all angles, his abstractions have an abyss-like sense of depth that makes one feel small, especially when standing up close.
The work of aboriginal artists like