Art Leven invites you to the inaugural exhibition and opening of 'Country x Country'

The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Sunday, May 19, 2024

Art Leven invites you to the inaugural exhibition and opening of 'Country x Country'
Neil Ernest Tomkins, Bush Banana There, 2023. Acrylic on Linen, 90 x 120 cm.

NEW SOUTH WALES.- Australia’s oldest Indigenous gallery Cooee Art is relaunching as Art Leven, ushering in a new era for the gallery under the stewardship of long-term owner and Director Mirri Leven.

Although the gallery remains focused on First Nations art, in this new chapter as Art Leven, the gallery is exhibiting non-Indigenous alongside First Nations artists, through specially curated individual projects. The new gallery vision focuses on transparent dialogue, offering an opportunity beyond the ordinary commercial relationship between artist and gallery, fostering an environment of openness and direct exchanges between artists. Art Leven is working directly with First Nations curators, art centres, and represented artists.

Art Leven is unveiling its inaugural exhibition in line with this new programming focus today within its bespoke gallery space, located in Gadial Country, Sydney Redfern. Curated by Gadigal artist Kate Constantine (Konstantina), the exhibition features work created in the Northern Territory Warlpiri community of Lajamanu, organically exploring themes around the craft of landscape painting and ways of seeing and translating land and Country.

This month, Art Leven travelled to the remote NT town of Lajamanu, bringing along Sydney artist Neil Ernest Tomkins for a weeklong painting workshop at Warnayaka Arts, alongside Warlpiri artist Kitty Napanagka Simon.

By welcoming Tomkins and Art Leven staff onto their Country and into their painting space, the art centre’s Warlpiri owners have opened a common space. Here, the artworks created are given room to communicate with each other throughout their creation. The resulting dialogue is free of cross-over interference, occurring naturally during the painting process - osmosis fuelled by mutual inspiration. A few of the other participating Warlpiri artists include Annie Napanangka Simon and Biddie Napanangka Timms, Robin Napurrurla Lawson and Isaiah Tjungurrayi Lewis.

Mirri Leven, Director of Art Leven said: Art Leven intends to honour the legacy of Cooee Art as Australia’s oldest Indigenous gallery. While project-based partnerships with non-Indigenous artists mark a new direction for the gallery, we remain strongly committed to promoting Indigenous art and culture. By broadening the gallery's program, we aim to invite audiences of the wider Australian and Western art world into a more intimate and understanding appreciation of our First Nations’ artists, past and present.

I’m thrilled to be back in Lajamanu. Kitty is incredibly important to me, as an artist and friend. Cooee and the Warlpiri community of Lajamanu have had a close relationship and a long history, even before I came on as gallery assistant almost 20 years ago. Later, Kitty became the first artist I took on to represent as a fledgling co-owner and director of Cooee.

This new chapter is not only an exciting development for us, but hopefully the wider Australian art community. Through this new direction, we aim to foster an environment of openness, transparency and communication that will bridge the gap and encourage exchange between Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists. One tenet of this project is to include artists who are specifically not in an exclusive relationship with Art Leven. In an industry with a sometimes-murky past, I hope that part of the dialogue we foster can focus on what an artist can and should expect of a gallery or representative. Art Leven means to embody the evolution of Cooee, providing a pathway to new ways of working together.

Showcasing two non-Gadigal artists for our first show as Art Leven, it felt important to invite a Gadigal woman from the Eora nation to curate and present the launching exhibition to the world.

Established in 1981 as a hybrid model to represent and support artists in an ethical and sustainable way, Cooee Art has since evolved by adding auctions to its credentials and exhibiting several of Australia’s leading artists. As a market leader with specialist knowledge and insight into the world of Australian Indigenous art, the organisation works with artists, galleries, museums, and private collections bi-annually to curate and consign artworks.


Contemporary landscape painter Neil Ernest Tompkins has developed a painting style recognisable for its blending and fragmenting of imagery and perspectives. He is renowned for his distinctive approach to mark-making and has been featured in myriad exhibitions across the globe, as well as being part of extensive commissions, murals, and residencies in Portugal, India, Peru, Mexico & Tasmania. Tomkins’ process usually begins en plein air, loosely drafted with a focus on composition and framework. Often, the artist refines his imagery by cutting up photographs taken while travelling, arranging them into collages that form a reference for his ensuing paintings. He is regularly exhibited and represented by galleries across Australia.

Kitty Napanangka Simon is a dedicated artist with a distinctive, singular aesthetic. Her paintings – at first denounced by senior men for straying too far from the traditional idiom – have excited discriminating curators and collectors since her first solo exhibition at Cooee Art in 2013, winning admirers both inside and outside her tight knit Warlpiri community. In 2020, Napanangka lost her sight due to cataracts and Leven, through Cooee Art, paid for her surgery. After regaining her sight, Napanangka Simon’s painting practice has dwindled and one goal of the Lajamanu project is her first major foray back into painting with a renewed confidence in her exceptional talent.

Lajamanu is an isolated township located over ten hour’s drive south of Darwin; eight hours north-west of Alice Springs; and eight hours south-east of Derby. Approximately 1000 Warlpiri people were forcibly moved to the remote point far north of the Warlpiri estate just after WWII.

Art Leven
‘Country X Country’
July 27th, 2023 - August 26th, 2023

Today's News

July 27, 2023

With grain in the cross hairs again, so is a jewel of Ukraine

First major exhibition exploring artistic dialogue between Manet and Degas to open at The Met

UMMA acquires works by McArthur Binion, Mel Bochner, Willie Cole, and more

Persuasion, patience and many permits brought Buddhist relics to the Met

Pivotal open-access publication on conserving canvas paintings now available

Laetitia Yhap joins Hales

New digital art commission by Peter Burr launches on

Sarindar Dhaliwal's multicoloured memories come vividly to life at the Art Gallery of Ontario

Conspicuous Gallantry Cross sells for hammer price of £160,000 at Noonans

Monash University Museum of Art welcomes new Director Dr. Rebecca Coates

Our favorite magical creatures live at Ghibli Park, so we had to go

The Cleveland Museum of Art announces new acquisitions

Art Leven invites you to the inaugural exhibition and opening of 'Country x Country'

Accademia delle Arti del Disegno presents 'Un Bestiario in Bronzo: A Bestiary in Bronze'

'Camila Falquez and Luis Rincón Alba: The Voice Does Go Up' at Hannah Traore Gallery

Kate Dorrough's exhibition 'The Vessel and the River' opens today at Arthouse Gallery

A Lover's Discourse: Chase Hall exhibition to include painting by Jackson Pollock

Thierry Goldberg is opening Friends & Family today, group exhibition exploring the concept of familiarity

Raclin Murphy Museum of Art announces death of Ernestine Raclin, arts patron, business leader and philanthropist

From pet cemetery owner to identity thief to bestselling ghostwriter

Biden creates monument to Emmett Till amid fights over Black history

RISD Museum announces a new Director

The Best Art Projects for Cross-Curricular Learning in the Classroom

Are Video Games a New Frontier for Art-Style Experimentation?

BriansClub, the Dark Web's Largest Carding Marketplace, Was Hacked This Week for the Second Time in Four Years

Futbol TV Live Your Gateway to Live Football Action

An Interview with Innovative Artist Maicol Ferrini

Leveraging Virtual Cards for Efficient Legal Service Billing in Law Firms

Find The Slot Gaming Universe In Indonesia From Classic To Video

Exciting Jackpot Slot Adventure In Top Destinations Across Indonesia

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

sa gaming free credit
Truck Accident Attorneys
Accident Attorneys

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. Hommage
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site Parroquia Natividad del Señor
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful