Level 2 Foyer
In 2007, The Hugh Williamson Foundation commissioned the magnificent tapestry Dulka Warngiid for Melbourne Recital Centre and the Victorian community. The commission realised the expressed wish of Dame Elisabeth Murdoch AC DBE, our Patron, for a major work to bring together two of her great passions: tapestry and music.
Based on a large-scale collaborative work by seven women artists from Bentinck Island held by the National Gallery of Victoria, the painting represents the individual country of each woman (see map below) in a combined work of vibrancy, colour and deep meaning. The artists on the work: ‘We each painted our country area which was special for us. Our painting is all of our country. That’s what the title [Djulka Warngiid] means – country, place, land – land of all.’
This contemporary Indigenous work boldly reflects the artistic vision for Melbourne Recital Centre and complements its aesthetic; in particular the lyrical graphic lines of the Elisabeth Murdoch Hall’s routed timber panelling.
The tapestry was woven with consummate skill by Amy Cornall, Rebecca Moulton and Cheryl Thornton of the Australian Tapestry Workshop during 2008 and 2009. It faithfully reflects the joyful exuberance of the painting, with richness added through its interpretation by the Workshop’s weavers, who are all trained artists. The tapestry was unveiled as the Centre opened in February 2009, and is visual testimony to its aspiration to be a centre of creative innovation and excellence where the joy of artistic expression is shared by all.
Djulka Warngiid (Land of All) 2007
6.1m (w) x 1.95 (h)
Weavers: Amy Cornall, Rebecca Moulton, Cheryl Thornton
Artists: Mirdidingkingathi Juwunda Sally Gabori, Birrmuyingathi Maali Netta Loogatha, Warthadangathi Bijarrb Ethel Thomas, Warthadangathi Bijarrb Ethel Thomas, Thunduyingathi Bijarrb May Moodoonuthi, Kuruwarriyingathi Bijarrb Paula Paul, Wirrngajingathi Bijarrb Dawn Naranatjil, Rayarriwarrtharrbayingat Amy Loogatha
The painting Dulka Warngiid (Land of All) is a collaborative work by seven women artists from Bentinck Island, in the Gulf of Carpentaria. The artists are based at Mornington Island Arts and Craft in the Gulf of Carpentaria, Queensland.
Our painting is all of our country. That's what the title means - country, place, land - land of all. We really enjoyed doing it as a group. We are very proud of our big painting."
The Australian Tapestry Workshop is a centre for one of Western civilisation's oldest and richest art forms. Established in 1976 and one of only a small number of similar organisations in the world, it boasts an international reputation for the production of contemporary, hand-woven tapestries.
Using the same techniques employed in Europe since the 15th century, the Australian Tapestry Workshop's skilled weavers work in collaboration with artists from Australia and overseas to produce tapestries that are famous for their freshness and vigour, vibrancy of colour, technical accomplishment and inventive interpretation. Since its inception, the Workshop's philosophy has been to employ weavers trained as artists to help enable the close collaboration essential with the artists whose work they are interpreting. The weavers use this collaborative information to create unique works of art, rather than woven reproductions of the design.
The Australian Tapestry Workshop has created more than 400 tapestries and each one is the result of a dynamic interaction between an artist and the weavers. For more information on the Workshop, click here.
The three main aims of the Hugh DT Williamson Foundation are to benefit the needy, encourage initiative and enhance the lives of Victorians. The foundation will consider any proposal for innovative and original programs which seek to meet, in a significant way, the needs of the people of Victoria. The fields considered are health, human services, educational, environmental and cultural. Major projects supported by the Foundation include:
Level 1 VIP Room
FRED WILLIAMS - LITHOGRAPHS (1976 - 1978)
The works exhibited in this room are from a series of 12 lithographs made by the artist and printed by Druckma Press. They relate to major paintings of the period, exhibited during 1977 and 1978. They were first exhibited at the Rudy Komon Gallery, Sydney and the Realities Gallery, Melbourne in mid-1978.
These six words are from the set of Artist's Proofs number 7 of 12, signed and numbered by the artist and from his personal collection.
The works are Copyright: The Estate of Fred Williams.
1. Werribee Gorge I
2. Werribee Gorge II
3. Kelly's Creek, Werribee Gorge
4. Dry Creek Bed, Werribee Gorge
5. Wild Dog Creek I
6. Wild Dog Creek II
During 1976 and 1977 Williams made many painting trips to Werribee Gorge National Park, west of Melbourne.
He had several favourite sites there where he liked to work. Another favourite site was Wild Dog Creek at St. Andrews, north of Melbourne. He painted there several times in 1977.
He enjoyed the rugged, unchanged character of these places, untouched by farming or later residential development yet easily accessible from home.