Bobby West Tjupurrula & Katarra Butler Napaltjarri

ReDot Fine Art Gallery
Aug 20, 2014 3:12AM

ReDot Fine Art Gallery proudly invites you to an exhibition of exceptional works from Australia’s foremost Aboriginal owned art centre, Papunya Tula Artists Pty. Ltd.  This exhibition represents the 11th annual showing in Singapore of the stunning work by these gifted artists from Australia’s Western Desert.

This year we will be hosting dual solo shows, simply titled after the participating artists, Bobby West Tjupurrula & Katarra Butler Napaltjarri.

Bobby West Tjupurrula is the son of Freddy West Tjakamarra, one of the founding shareholders of Papunya Tula Artists, and comes from an impressive family of established Papunya Tula painters. Born at the rockhole site of Tjamu Tjamu, east of Kiwirrkura, around 1958, Bobby’s family was met by Jeremy Long’s welfare patrol in 1963.  He commenced painting for Papunya Tula Artists in the late 1980s, but it wasn’t really until 1993 that he began painting regularly. Since then he has become an integral part of the company not just as an artist but also as the company Chairman on several occasions. Bobby is a strong advocate and voice of the Western Desert Dialysis unit, an organisation close to his heart given he too suffers renal failure and receives regular dialysis.

Katarra Butler Napaltjarri in contrast has only recently burst onto the Papunya Tula artistic map, though records show she first painted for the company in 2001. Born near the current location of the Tjukurla Community in Western Australia in circa 1946, she was the second wife of Anatjari Tjakamarra, another pre-eminent member of the original group of painters who started the Central Desert painting movement in Papunya in 1971 and learnt her trade from him most probably and Ningura Napurulla, whose mentoring is evident in her early works but not so much in the abandonment of colour and brush work in her recent acclaimed work. Whilst she has extended family ties with the Tjukurla area, Katarra also spends considerable time in Kintore and Kiwirrkura where she accesses the Papunya Tula Artists studio. 

Whilst their respective styles could not be more opposing, Bobby’s traditionally inspired and firmly encamped in the style of his fore-fathers and Katarra’s more modern, whimsical and abstract, they very much represent the Papunya Tula art movement of today. This will be Katarra’s first solo exhibition, and comes just months after being nominated as a finalist in this year’s NATSIAA awards meanwhile this will be the 2nd solo show for Bobby, who has earned enormous appeal in the NATSIAA over the many years he has painstakingly produced complex, important, works for the company.

The exhibition opens on Wednesday, 29th October and runs till Saturday, 29th November 2014 and it is a must-see for anyone interested in following the recent developments of Papunya Tula Artists, one of the Aboriginal art movements most important art centres.  The show will be attended by Mr. Paul Sweeney, General Manager of Papunya Tula Artists Pty. Ltd.

Opening reception: Wednesday, 29th September, 7:30 to 9:30 pm

For further information, visit or drop a note to [email protected].

ReDot Fine Art Gallery