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From the inbox: Aborigine art visits Philadelphia


Frank Bramblett, painter, Pew fellow, teacher and good friend of Artblog wrote us about an upcoming event that he and his son were instrumental in setting up: a lecture about Aboriginal art by an Aboriginal art authority, Tim Jennings. Jennings, who runs Gallery Mbantua in the Australian Outback, will show slides and speak Thursday, Oct. 26 at 7 pm at Crane Art Center, 1400 American St. He will have some paintings in tow that will be available for purchase. (20% of the purchase price of sales goes to the Mbantua Sports Foundation to develop sports facilities and athletic training.)

Here’s what Frank wrote:

Queenie Kenmare
Painting by Queenie Kenmarre

A few months ago, my son spent several days on a press tour in the Outback of Australia with Mr. Tim Jennings. He returned to the states with many fascinating stories about the people, their culture, and a selection of fifteen amazing paintings. These small paintings represent many of the artists represented by the gallery. One of the paintings, similar to the painting behind the photo of the artist Queenie Kenmarre found on the “Selected Artists” page of the gallery website now hangs in my studio. When I learned that Mr. Jennings would be traveling in the U.S., I began to seek a location for him to present the paintings of the Mbantua Gallery to the Philadelphia community of artists and collectors. I trust that Mr. Jenning’s presentation and the Aborigine paintings will be informative and intriguing. I hope that you can join us for the event. Please invite friends that might be interested. I would like to thank Nick Kripal and Richard Hricko for their support in this effort and for the use of the Crane Arts Building space.

Violet Petyarre
Painting by Violet Petyarre

The Mbantua Gallery website displays many pages of paintings that are typical of those that will be for sale in Philadelphia. Most of the paintings will be small and affordable.

Mr. Jennings’ visit is supported by the Australian Tourist Bureau and is being hosted by the Australian Embassy in New York where he will giving a presentation just prior to his visit to Philadelphia. Mr. Jenning’s interest in the work of the Aborigine people began as a regional police officer. Later he became a traveling merchant supplying them with goods. As he earned their trust, they began to allow him to begin to market their paintings. Today Mbantua Gallery occupies an 8000 sq. ft. gallery and museum in Alice Springs. A primary mission of the gallery is to support the Abrorigine people, and bring attention to their culture and its artworks. If you are interested in seeing a selection of the painting that will be available for purchase in Philadelphia, please e-mail me at , and I will forward images. –Frank Bramblett

Australian Aborigine Painting
Video Presentation and
Lecture by Tim Jennings
Director, Mbantua Gallery
Alice Springs, Northern Territory

Thursday, October 26, 7:00 p.m.
Crane Arts Building
The Dock Gallery
1400 North American St.