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3 March 2017

Arts and social change company Big hART to launch the Namatjira Legacy Trust

The National Museum is hosting a series of events, including a new exhibit and the launch of a charitable trust, to celebrate the work of artist Albert Namatjira, his community and descendants.

Lenie Namatjira and Gloria Pannka, renowned artists and granddaughters of Albert Namatjira, and Clara Inkamala, acclaimed potter and watercolourist, will visit the National Museum on 3–4 March as part of a group from the Iltja Ntjarra Many Hands Art Centre in Alice Springs.

A new exhibit about Ntaria (Hermannsburg) and Namatjira’s legacy, which displays work by each of the three artists, is now on show in the Landmarks gallery. Curator Jennifer Wilson said the group will visit the display and hold a watercolour masterclass.

'The exhibit is drawn entirely from the collections of the National Museum, and consists of 15 objects representing 125 years of history from the Finke River mission, the Hermannsburg settlement and the community of Ntaria today. This is the first time most of the objects have been displayed,' Ms Wilson said.

National Museum director, Dr Mathew Trinca, said 'We are honoured to have descendants of Albert Namatjira, one of Australia’s great artists, with us to share their stories and talent.'

Iltja Ntjarra studio coordinator, Ellie Kate Misios, says the centre is proudly Aboriginal owned and home to practising Hermannsburg School watercolour artists who continue to paint in the tradition of Albert Namatjira, arguably one of Australia’s most famous artists of the 20th century.

Leading arts and social change company, Big hART, will officially launch the Namatjira Legacy Trust at 11am on Friday 3 March at the Museum, with a special performance by singer-songwriter Shellie Morris.

Big hART CEO Scott Rankin said, 'The trust hopes to facilitate a return of the copyright of Albert Namatjira’s work to the family and community, and is also seeking to raise money to support the health, welfare, education and sustainability of the Namatjira families and extended communities – to ensure that the extraordinary Central Desert watercolour movement continues long into the future, benefiting many generations to come.'

Please contact Tracy Sutherland (02) 6208 5338, 0438 087 717 or

For enquiries on the Namatjira Legacy Trust or Big hART, contact Bettina Richter 0414 441 860 or

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