Visual Arts Award
Congratulations Judith Pungarta Inkamala, recipient of the 2022 Australia Council Award for Visual Arts!
Judith Inkamala is the Chair and senior member of Hermannsburg Potters Aboriginal Corporation, having joined the founding group of artists in 1993.
Judith is an is an inspiring and respected leader in her community of Ntaria (Hermannsburg), for her unwavering dedication and commitment to intergenerational sharing of cultural and ceramic knowledge. Judith is also a proud, former member of the renowned Hermannsburg Choir.
In her works, Judith depicts her lived histories and distinct Western Arrarnta Country. She sculpts and paints these visual histories and contemporary settings, speaking to her cultural beliefs, traditions and values. With nearly 30 years’ experience working with clay and underglazes, Judith’s work is skillfully painted as the pot is constructed.
Like many Hermannsburg Potters and Western Arrarnta artists, Judith’s painting style was informed by the water colours of Albert Namatjira and the artists working in Ntaria at this time. “I remember the old people painting on paper. Painting the water colours. I was best friends with Gillian Namatjira. After school I went to her house. Albert, her grandfather, was painting water colours. The ladies painted too.”
Since 1993, Judith has been a part of over 100 group exhibitions both nationally and internationally. Her work has been widely collected, held in public and private collections including Art Gallery of New South Wales, National Gallery of Victoria and National Gallery of Australia.
In 1996, Inkamala was invited to participate in a cultural and pottery exchange with the Sasak Potters of Lombok, Indonesia. She also travelled to China in 2010 to showcase her pottery to ceramic artists for the collaborative exhibition Meou Art: Exhibition of Australian Indigenous Artin Shanghai. Judith has been a finalist of the NATSIA Awards three times.
Judith’s achievements should also be measured in terms of the significant social and cultural contributions she has made to her community, her audiences and to Australian contemporary art.
Meet the other recipients
The 2022 Australia Council Awards will be showcased on this page on 8-12 August 2022. Each of these artists in their own way reflect the vibrancy of Australia’s diverse cultural life.