Issue 9
Monday, 02 November 2020
Charles Darwin University
Ulumpawarru 1994, CDU Art Collection
Ulumpawarru 1994, CDU Art Collection

New exhibition links NT’s north and south

By Leanne Miles

A new exhibition at the Charles Darwin University Art Gallery will celebrate 30 years of paintings and prints by Alice Springs-based landscape artist Wayne Eager.

“Bitumen & Dirt – Wayne Eager: 30 Years in the Territory” is a survey exhibition featuring 78 works from public and private collections around Australia, including 13 from the Charles Darwin University Art Collection.

CDU Art Gallery curator Kellie Joswig said the exhibition charts Wayne Eager’s career since arriving in the Northern Territory in 1990.  

“He has lived in Central Australia since 1992, living and working at Haasts Bluff for five years and was later a field officer for Papunya Tula Artists from 1996-2005,” Ms Joswig said.

“Since then, he has been a professional painting mentor and workshop facilitator for artists working through Ananguku Arts in the APY Land communities.”   

She said Mr Eagar creates unique and densely layered paintings of shapes, lines and dashes, that evoke the lacework of dirt tracks and bitumen roads linking remote Aboriginal communities and outstations with the steadfast ”line” of the Stuart Highway - uniting the Territory from north to south. 

“Together, the works can be read as a ‘map’ marking the far reaches of the Territory and its various topographies and juxtapositions of green, wet, humid tropics and red, dry, arid desert,” Ms Joswig said.  

Wayne Eager was a founding member of the Roar Studios in Melbourne in 1982. He has regularly exhibited in solo exhibitions and galleries around Australia. This is his first survey exhibition in a public art gallery.  

“Bitumen & Dirt – Wayne Eager: 30 Years in the Territory” is supported by Artback NT and will run at the CDU Art Gallery from 22 October 2020 to 20 February 2021, before travelling to the Araluen Arts Centre in March.

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