Nawurapu Wunuŋmurra

Born Miwatj, Northeast Arnhem Land, NT, 1952
Died Nhulunbuy, NT, 2018
Yolŋu Clan: Dhalwaŋu, Narrkala group  
Moiety: Yirritja
Homeland: Gurrumuru

Nawurapu Wunuŋmurra was the eldest son of the late Yaŋgarriny Wunuŋmurra, the first Aboriginal artist to have his copyright recognised in an Australian court and the recipient of the prestigious Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award (NATSIAA) first prize in 1997. From an early age Nawurapu assisted his father. As his own spiritual authority increased, he produced works in his own right.

Following his father’s passing, Wunuŋmurra stepped into a senior role with his brothers. His ceremonial responsibilities required him to move between the homeland centres of the Miwatj region, Northeast Arnhem Land and beyond into Central Arnhem Land. In his later years he lived at Yirrkala, Gurrumuru, Gän_gän, Gapuwiyak and Wändawuy.

Wunuŋmurra was involved in all major group projects stemming from Yirrkala in the 1990s and since 1995 he has exhibited widely in group and solo exhibitions throughout Australia. In 2015 he travelled to Makassar, Indonesia, where a batik from one of his paintings was presented to the Indonesian Textile Museum.

Wunuŋmurra’s works are held in private and public collections throughout Australia and overseas, including the Australian National Maritime Museum, Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art, National Gallery of Victoria, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Art Gallery of South Australia, Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory and Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Collection of the University of Virginia, USA.