Thames and Hudson

Dreaming the Land: Aboriginal Art from Remote Australia

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Marie Geissler
303 mm x 258 mm

The artworks of Aboriginal Australian peoples are a profoundly important repository of knowledge and reflect a deep connection to Country. This visually rich survey explores the evolution of the contemporary Aboriginal art movement in remote areas of Australia across twenty-nine art centres in five states from the Kimberley through to Arnhem Land and beyond.

Featuring profiles of 100 artists, this unparalleled work provides valuable insight into Knowledges and Traditions, while highlighting the achievements of each unique artist - all recognised as among the most distinguished painters from remote Australia. Author Marie Geissler's opening essay traces the progression from rock art through to the launch of the Western desert movement, which began at Papunya in the early 1970s and led to the widespread uptake of contemporary painting by Aboriginal artists. Esteemed writers Margo Neale and Djon Mundine offer erudite contributions distilling the complexity of the art movement and its impact.

Dreaming the Land is an authoritative reference that offers readers around the world a valuable introduction to Aboriginal culture and the stories that underpin the paintings.

Marie Geissler is a cultural historian who has worked in the field of Indigenous art for over thirty years. She has a particular interest in Arnhem Land bark painting and the ways Indigenous Australian art has been critical in promoting the self-determination histories of Indigenous Australians. Marie is currently at the National Museum of Australia in Canberra, where she is researching its bark painting collection. She is also a Visiting Research Associate at the University of Wollongong, and an Investigation Team Member to the Garuwanga Project Research Roundtable of the Indigenous Knowledge Forum, Law Faculty of the University of Technology, Sydney.

Marie is the author of The Making of Indigenous Australian Contemporary Art: Arnhem Land Bark Painting, 1970-1990(Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2020). She has written academic articles relating to Indigenous Australian art, including the use of Aboriginal art in cultural diplomacy, native title land claim and the critical role played by the Aboriginal Arts Board and cultural historian Ulli Beier in Indigenous art history. She has also published on urban Indigenous artist Helen S. Tiernan and the Renshaw Indigenous Collection at the New England Regional Arts Museum.