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Emily exhibition to Osaka, Tokyo and Canberra

22 JANUARY 2008

The largest solo exhibition of an Australian artist to tour overseas, Utopia: the Genius of Emily Kame Kngwarreye, will be on display at the National Museum of Australia in August 2008.

"The National Museum was invited to present exhibitions of the works of Emily Kngwarreye for major national galleries in Japan, now we are delighted to be able to show these remarkable works at the National Museum in Canberra," said Craddock Morton, Director of the National Museum of Australia.

The exhibition will open at the National Museum of Art, Osaka on 26 February, 2008 and at the National Art Centre, Tokyo on 28 May, 2008.

Utopia: The Genius of Emily Kame Kngwarreye tells the story of Emily Kame Kngwarreye (c1910 – 1996) as one of Australia's greatest contemporary artists. It also explores her life as a senior Anmatyerre custodian and the environment she worked in — 250 km north of Alice Springs — which provided much inspiration for her extraordinary large canvases.

The exhibition brings together 120 works valued at more than $30 million from more than 60 national and overseas collections, including the National Gallery of Australia, Art Gallery of New South Wales, National Gallery of Victoria, Powerhouse Museum, Melbourne Museum and some early works from the Holmes à Court collection.

"Emily's ability to penetrate the soul of this land and capture the hearts, minds and imagination of the Australian audience is beyond art," said exhibition curator Margo Neale, explaining that the National Museum exhibition is well equipped to tell the stories behind the paintings.

The exhibition has been made possible with the support of the Australian Government, Yomiuri Shimbun, the Australia-Japan Foundation and Woodside.


For interviews, images and more information please contact Dennis Grant on 02 6208 5351, 0409 916 481; Caroline Vero on 02 6208 5338, 0438 620 710 or media@nma.gov.au