Aboriginal Bush Traders is proud to present Gesture, an exhibition foregrounding the artistic practice of Indigenous artists with disability in the Northern Territory. Featuring the work of artists from Bindi Mwerre Anthurre Artists (Central Desert), Free Space Studio (Darwin) Ngaruwanajirri Inc. (Tiwi) and the work of Dion Beasley (Tennant Creek), Gesture speaks to bold mark making and the presence of the artist’s hand. In another sense, gesture also speaks to forms of communication that are non-verbal and the importance of those forms for communities of people with disability. 

The Bindi Mwerre Anthurre Artists studio is the first in Australia to occupy the intersection between supported studios and Aboriginal Art Centres. The studio supports artists from communities across the Central Desert region – from Kaltukatjara (Docker River) to Yuendumu. Their painting process is an expression of self and connection to home country – an act that upholds personal and cultural identity.

Free Space Studio provides studio access for artists in Darwin with disability and creates opportunities for disability-led visual arts productions and publications. They run facilitated visual arts workshops in a range of mediums and support artists to participate in art prizes, to exhibit in contemporary spaces, and to undertake solo exhibitions.

Ngaruwanajirri Incorporated is an arts centre at Wurrumiyanga on Bathurst Island. Ngaruwanajirri, which means ‘helping one another’ in Tiwi, was established in 1994. It was originally set up for disabled Tiwi residents but now includes all artists, with the original artists working with traditional wood carvers.

Dion Beasley is an Alywarr artist from the remote community of Owairtilla (Canteen Creek), located south-east of Tennant Creek. Dion’s artwork is inspired by his observations of community life, in particular the many entertaining characters and encounters of ‘cheeky’ camp dogs. Dion has built Cheekydog into a nationally recognisable clothing and merchandise brand based on his captivating drawings and prints.

6pm Friday, July 19

July 19 - August 31