Lindsay Bird Biography

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Lindsay Bird Mpetyane was born circa 1935 at Mulga Bore near Utopia, Northern Territory. He is a respected elder and tribal leader of the Anmatyerre tribe and worked as a shepherd and stockman for many years.
Lindsay, along with a number of women at Utopia, was introduced to painting in 1977, when Yipati, a Pitjantjatjara artist from Ernabella and Suzie Bryce, a craft instructor, taught them how to paint on silk batik. Later, Jenny Green and Julia Murray would supply materials, training and encouragement.
With up to 80 members at a time, the Utopia Women's Batik Group became an essential source of inspiration for the artists, and its tremendous success both in Australia and overseas led to another successful project introduced in 1988, in which the artists were to paint on primed, stretched canvas. Lindsay, and many of the women, took to the new medium with ease and enthusiasm, finding it more exciting to work with than the silk and batik techniques they had hitherto used. Lindsay was the only male to participate in the important Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association (CAAMA) community projects which resulted in the works being exhibited at the S.H.Erwin Gallery in Sydney and several other notable galleries across Australia. It was the beginning of the Utopian Art Movement, and it was impressive enough to gain international attention with 'Utopia – A Picture Story, 88 silk batiks from the Holmes a Court Collection', which toured throughout Australia and then onto Scotland and Ireland in 1990. 
As a senior law man, Lindsay can depict many themes of men’s law in his paintings. His Dreamings include ‘Çharpa’ (Honey Ant), Bush Plum, Men’s Ceremony, Yam Dreaming and Snake Dreaming. Lindsay's artworks are often large and imposing with a distinctive boldness of colour selection and harmonious design.
Lindsay lives a traditional lifestyle with his wife Mavis and their three daughters, maintaining strong links with their land values and ceremony. 
 
COLLECTIONS

The Holmes a Court Collection, Perth 
Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth 
Museum of Victoria, Melbourne 
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 
The National Museum of Australia 
Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association
The Kelton Foundation, Santa Monica, USA 
Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 
Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane
Royal Hibernian Academy Dublin Ireland
Art Bank Sydney
Winchester Regional Airport Collection USA
Parliament House Canberra
Australian Art Gallery
Art Gallery of South Australia
Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane
Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory
National Gallery of Victoria
Museum of Contemporary Art
Art Gallery of Western Australia
Art Gallery of New South Wales
Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery
Kluge-Ruhe Collection University Virginia USA

 

    SOLO EXHIBTIONS

    1991  Utopia Art, Sydney
    1989  Syme, Dodson Gallery, Sydney

     

    GROUP EXHIBITIONS

    1998  Art Gallery Kunsthuys, the Netherlands
    1998  Dreamings Exhibition, Spazio Pitti Arte, Florence, Italy
    1998  Dreamings Exhibition, Vlaams - Europeesch, Brussels, Belgium
    1994  Central Australian Aboriginal Art & Craft Exhibition, Araluen Centre, Alice Springs
    1991  Flash Pictures, National Gallery of Australia
    1991  The Eighth National Aboriginal Art Award, Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, Darwin
    1991  Aboriginal Art and Spirituality, High Court, Canberra, ACT
    1990  Contemporary Art from the Holmes a Court Collection, Harvard University of Minnesota, Lake Oswego Centre for Arts, USA
    1990  Third Eye Centre, Glasgow, UK
    1990  Utopia-A Picture Story, an exhibition of 88 works on silk from the Holmes'a'Court Collection, which toured Eire & Scotland
    1988  Utopia Women's Paintings, the First Works on Canvas, A Summer Project, S. H. Ervin Gallery, Sydney

     

    EXHIBITION OF BATIK SILKS

    1988  Time Before Time, Austral Gallery, St Louis, USA
    1988  Painting and Batik from the Desert, Utopia Art, Sydney, NSW
    1988  Utopia Batik, Craft Council Gallery, Canberra, ACT
    1988  Utopia Batik, Queensland Museum, Brisbane, QLD
    1987  Fremantle Arts Centre, Fremantle, WA
    1987  Darwin Museum Gallery, Darwin, NT
    1987  Yirrkala Community Centre, Northern Territory
    1987  Jogyakarta Fine Art Academy, Indonesia
    1987  Sydney Expo, Craft Council Gallery, Sydney, NSW
    1987  The Araluen Centre, Alice Springs, NT
    1986  Craft Council Gallery, Canberra, ACT
    1986  Bundaberg Art Gallery, Queensland
    1986  The Araluen Centre, Springs Craft Festival, Alice Springs, NT
    1985  Black Women in Focus, Adelaide Festival, Adelaide, SA
    1985  Burnie Gallery, Tasmania
    1985  Tasmanian Craft Gallery, Hobart, TAS
    1984  Craft Council Gallery, Canberra, ACT
    1984  Queensland University Gallery, Brisbane, QLD
    1984  Fireworks Gallery, Adelaide, SA
    1984  Sydney Craft Expo, Sydney, NSW
    1984  Darwin Craft Council Gallery, Darwin, NT
    1984  The Araluen Centre, Alice Springs, NT
    1983  Adelaide Festival Centre, Adelaide, SA
    1983  Alice Springs Craft Council, Alice Springs, NT
    1982  Sydney Craft Expo, Sydney, NSW
    1982  Brisbane Commonwealth Games Exhibition, Brisbane, QLD
    1981  Floating Forests of Silks - Utopia Batik from the Desert, Adelaide Festival Centre, SA
    1980  Artworks, Alice Springs, NT