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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Bark Ladies: Eleven Artists from Yirrkala

National Gallery of Victoria / Melbourne / Art

Bark painting began as a ceremonial art form among Australian Aboriginal people. It requires a large sheet of bark, usually removed from the Stringybark species of Eucalyptus tree, that is then fired and weighted to remove the curve. Bark painting can be figural or abstract, with subjects mythic, mystic, and narrative. All approaches include a great deal of pattern. Indeed, designs are passed down within families and cannot be used by others. This exhibition looks at the work of 11 female artists from the Buku Larrngay Mulka Centre, an art center in Yirrkala, a small Aboriginal community 700 kilometers east of Darwin. —L.J.

National Gallery of Victoria 180 St Kilda Rd, Melbourne VIC 3006, Australia
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