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It was during my research on aboriginal art that I decided to visit Australia. I was instantly amazed by its force and modernity. And it’s all the more interesting that artists have been handing it down to each other for over 40 000 years. Not only is an aboriginal painting graphically pleasing to the eye, it is also full of meaning. A lot of them are inspired by the “DreamTime”. It’s a notion rather difficult to understand, but highly intriguing. It’s the age of the beginning of the world, the story of spiritual ancestors who have modeled landscapes by their passing through the lands. So each mountain, hill or river has its own story. This primal time still exists in a parallel universe where spirits continue to roam the earth.
The following photos show some mural paintings that I came by during my trip in the north and the central parts of Australia. Some of them were at least 40 000 years old (to give you a better idea of how old it is, our world famous Lascaux caves are “only” 17 000 years old):
Now, here are the “must-sees” of my discoveries at the art museums and galleries of Sydney, Darwin and Alice Springs. Some of them are natural pigment paintings on tree barks, a very common practice in the north. Others are acrylic paintings on canvas, more common in the central parts of Australia. I’ll leave you to appreciate the composition work and the use of colors: