In a joint venture between Barkly Regional Arts and Desart (Association of Central Australian Aboriginal Art and Craft Centres), Indigenous artists have travelled in from Ampilatwatja, Canteen Creek, Epenarra, Elliott and Mungkarta to join Tennant Creek artists from BRA and Nyinkka Nyunyu for the annual week-long Barkly Artists Camp being held at the Barkly Regional Arts Visual Arts Studios on Staunton Street. The Barkly artists are all engaged with BRA’s visual arts outreach program, Artists of the Barkly. They meet annually at the camp to catch up with family, swap stories, ideas and community art centre matters as well as attending skills workshops.


Desart have dispatched a support crew of drivers, facilitators and teaching artists to engage with Barkly artists for the camp. This year arts skills on offer are slip-cast ceramics and glaze techniques, with professional ceramicist, Ruth McMillan, and drawing and printmaking skills, with professional artist Barbie Kjar. Both artists have worked and exhibited nationally and internationally and bring that perspective of how to engage in the wider art landscape to local remote artists.


As leaders in their respective community art groups, the regional representatives will then travel these skills back to their communities to broaden the range and quality of arts products for sale in their community arts enterprises.

Also joining the Barkly Artists Camp this year are 7 Korean practicing artists and a film crew of 2 who are being hosted by Barkly Arts for the week as part of an artists exchange program that has been developed with Desart, BRA and the Arts Council of Korea.


“It’s a really wonderful opportunity for the artists of the Barkly to directly engage with the broader international art community in a spirit of artistic and cross-cultural exchange” said BRA EO, Alan Murn. “We look forward to a reciprocal artists exchange by facilitating local Barkly artists to visit South Korea next year for cultural and professional development in art genres and arts management practice” he said. There will be a gathering and artists’ talks at the end of the week as an opportunity for both the local artists and the Korean artists to display their output for the week and discuss their experience.


On September 3rd, most of the participants will de-camp and head to Alice Springs for the celebrations and events surrounding the iconic 2015 Desert Mob produced at the Araluen Arts Centre by Desart. There they will meet with Indigenous artists and artsworkers from across the Central Desert, APY lands and WA at a number of events, including the Desert Mob Symposium, Market Place and Exhibition. BRA was able to secure some space for the Artists of the Barkly in the important Exhibition area this year.

“The Desert Mob Exhibition is of national and even international significance and attracts buyers and collectors from all over the world and has been the launching pad to a successful career for many Indigenous artists for many years. We are truly excited to have secured a rare spot in this Exhibition” said Alan Murn



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