Artist Profile

Featuring Vanessa Inkamala, Dellina Inkamala, Dianne Inkamala, Delray Inkamala, Reinhold Inkamala, Kathy Inkamala, Selma Coulthard Nunay, Mervyn Rubuntja, Betty Namatjira Wheeler Naparula, Benita Clements, Mandy Malbunka, Kathleen France & Ada Lechleitner.


Artists here at Iltja Ntjarra Art Centre paint in the watercolour tradition of Albert Namatjira. Passed down through family lines, the Western Aranda artists have developed a style now known as the Hermannsburg School of Art. The Country the artists depict is of sacred and cultural significance, they paint ancestral sites in the landscape relevant to their family lines. The Iltja Ntjarra artists journey through painting speaks of knowledge and respect. - Marisa Maher, Assistant Manager & Curator


Painting on repurposed road signs this unique and innovative body of work speaks to the way country is named and boundaries are drawn since colonisation. Whether used to direct traffic or to communicate specific rules, signs like these are crucial in governing our relationship to the land. In bright and arresting colours, they are used to convey laws and regulations across the continent. In the hands of the Iltja Ntjarra artists, their function is subverted to communicate important information relating to Country, its beauty, cultural practices and customary lore on traditional lands. Each sign has been painted with images of Country in the Hermansberg style. Alongside these beautiful images are messages that urge us to look after these precious lands for future generations, telling us that it is not something to be owned or taken advantage of for profit.

We want to introduce to people in urban environments the beautiful landscape of the Northern Territory. At the same time, we want to raise awareness about the issues we are facing. - Senior artist Mervyn Rubuntja

In the past there was so much vegetation rich with bush medicine. The main springs were always bubbling like a hot tub. The birds and wild animals always came to drink water. Nowadays the vegetation is decreasing, it has been heavily destroyed by the introduction of buffel grass. - Selma Coulthard Nunay

The Iltja Ntjarra artists have dedicated decades of committed artistic practice to the respectful and close study of their Country. These works bring viewers into this practice of Kangkwerrama or respectfully taking notice. For those unfamiliar with Central Australian landscape, the works are captivating depictions of the landscapes. The messages they convey command attention, reworking the words of the colonial state to speak plainly and clearly, to demand respect for Country, its stories and people.

The Iltja Ntjarra artists' road signs featured in the 23rd Biennale of Sydney in 2022 and in 'Belonging / Tjoritjarinja' at Ngununggula in the Southern Highlands, 25 March - 21 May 2023. Works from this project were acquired by the Murdoch University Art Collection in 2023.

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