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Arrarnta people

Australia 1902 – 1959

Mulga plaque (hunter and dog) [Wall plaque decorated in poker work (hunter with dog)] c.1936-44 Description: wooden plaque with poker worked tree and hunter with 3 spears and spear thrower and dog.Wire hanger located in center.
Place made: Hermannsburg, Northern Territory, Australia
Materials & Technique: sculptures, woodwork, pokerworkon hardwood poker-work-on hardwood

Primary Insc: verso u.c. pokerwork 'Made by Albert'
Secondary Insc: verso c. gold ink stamped 'HERMANNSBURG / PALM VALLEY CENTRAL AUSTRALIA.'
Dimensions: 52.0 h x 16.0 w x 1.0 d cm
Acknowledgement: Purchased 1996
Accession No: NGA 96.1092

The seeds of Albert Namatjira's creative vision can be seen in items he produced for sale to tourists. They consisted of plaques and artefacts decorated with pokerwork (using a heated wire or hot metal tool) and later with painted images.

Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra