Over the past four years, Ikuntji Artists has invested into researching the history of the community, re-writing the biographies of artists in their own voices and tracing the history of the art movement. This was funded through project funding by ILA – Indigenous Languages and Arts. The projects were completed in a multimedia format: from interviews and written biographies to films in language and photography.
Ikuntji Artists is one of the first Indigenous art centres in the Western Desert created by women for women. This project is about the unheard voices of the Western Desert art movement. It aims at capturing the biographies of these artists and their descendants in audio, film and photography.
In 2018, Ikuntji Artists hosted two workshops with photographer and filmographer Tobias Titz. In a series of workshops arts workers and artists from Ikuntji Artists experimented with the medium of photography. Renowned photographer Tobias Titz guided the artists and arts workers through the process and focused in particular on portraits of the artists. As part of the workshops artists created etchings about their country.
Artist Life Stories
Ikuntji Artists have also been recording artists’ life stories in film and interviews since 2017. These feature artists telling their stories in their own words, and in Pintupi-Luritja, Pitjantjatjara and Walpiri. These videos have captured the stories of many important artists and community leaders who have since passed away.
Visiting and Recording Country
As part of this project, Ikuntji Artists have also been working with artists to record important cultural sights on country in and around Haasts Bluff. The project also aims to help bring artists back to important sites through ‘bush trips’ (camping).
Research and Archival work
A large part of the art centre’s work is archival. It includes but is not limited to recording the stories associated with each artwork, biographies and the keeping of a photographic database. This archive is accessible to artists and community members and is an important vehicle for intergenerational knowledge transfer.