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Language: Kuninjku
Community: Maningrida
Art : Aboriginal
Region: Arnhem Land
State: Northern Territory

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Originally from the western part of Arnhem Land (northern Australia), the artist has created a sculpture typical of the art of this maritime region. Hamish Karrkarrhba has depicted one of the protective spirits of the coast, whose images can be found on the walls of the caves where the Aborigines held their sacred ceremonies over 20,000 years ago: the Mimi spirits. Generally, these spirits are aerial spirits, characterised by their great slenderness and the fragility of a body that can break at the slightest breath of wind. They gave the aborigines their laws and customs; they taught them their ritual songs; and they are also the originators of pictorial art: according to legend, they were the first to paint the first silhouettes representing them on the vaults of sacred caves. The sculptor emphasised the long character of the Mimi spirit and also gave it the anthropomorphic features (head and arms) with which they are traditionally represented. However, the very abstract and "minimalist" way in which the facial features are painted may also evoke the ceremonial masks used by the initiates to celebrate the Mimi spirits. The work, made of wood and painted with natural pigments, is decorated with ritual and clan motifs specific to the tribes of Arnhem Land: these are mainly latticework, known as rarrk (to the west) and miny'tji or dhulang (to the east): whatever their name, it is these that give the sculpture its sacred dimension, symbolically investing it with the forces of the deity represented

Public collections:

-Musée de l'homme, Paris

-Kluge Collection, Morven Estate, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA

-Laverty Collection, Sydney, NSW

-Macquarie Bank Art Collection

-Museum of Victoria, Melbourne, VIC

-Walonia Aboriginal Art, Holland
Hamish KARRKARRHBA_Mimih Spirit_Australian Aboriginal Art
N°: 4024


Mimih Spirit

Natural pigments on wood
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Hamish KARRKARRHBA_Mimih Spirit_Australian Aboriginal Art
N°: 2801


Mimih Spirit

Wood & natural pigments

View the artwork fact sheet
Ajouter cette oeuvre à vos favoris
  Some references:
Musée du Quai Branly, Musée des Confluences à Lyon, Musée d'Art Contemporain les Abattoirs à Toulouse, Musée des Arts d’Afrique et d’Asie de Vichy, Musée de la Musique, Museum d'histoire naturelle de Lille, Musée de Rochefort, Fondation Electricité de France, Fondation Colas, Banque Dexia ...

We are members of the Chambre Nationale des Experts Spécialisés en Objets d'Art et de Collection (C.N.E.S.)*
We are members of the Comité Professionnel des Galeries d'Art
*National French Chamber of experts specialized in artworks
Comité des Galeries d'Art