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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

Djon

1990 (printed 2013)
Michael Riley

from the series ‘Michael Riley Portraits 1984-1990’
inkjet print on paper (frame: 46.0 cm x 43.4 cm depth 5.0 cm, image: 43.5 cm x 41.0 cm)

Djon Mundine OAM, a Bandjalung man, is a curator, writer, artist and activist. Between 1979 and 1995 he was the art adviser at Milingimbi and Ramingining in the Northern Territory. Together with Ramingining artists he conceived the Aboriginal Memorial, which has been on virtually continuous display at the National Gallery of Australia since 1988. Mundine has held curatorial positions in many national and international institutions, including the Art Gallery of New South Wales, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney and the Queensland Art Gallery. In 2005-2006 he was research professor at the National Museum of Ethnology (Minpaku) in Osaka, Japan. His major exhibitions include Tyerabowbarwarryaou — I Shall never Become a Whiteman (with Fiona Foley, 1994) for the Havana Biennale and the Museum of Contemporary Art; The Native Born (1996) at the Museum of Contemporary Art; They are Meditating: Bark Paintings from the Museum of Contemporary Art’s Arnott’s Collection (2008); and the touring exhibition Bungaree: The first Australian (2015-2016). Mundine now works as an independent curator and writer.

Michael Riley, Wiradjuri and Kamilaroi photographer, film-maker and video-artist, was one of Australia’s groundbreaking, most influential urban Aboriginal artists of the 1980s and 1990s.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2013
© Michael Riley/Copyright Agency, 2021

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. Works of art from the collection are reproduced as per the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). The use of images of works from the collection may be restricted under the Act. Requests for a reproduction of a work of art can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

Artist and subject

Michael Riley (age 30 in 1990)

Djon Mundine OAM

Subject professions

Activism

Visual arts and crafts

Related information

The Companion

Permanent collection catalogue

Café and shop

On one level The Companion talks about the most famous and frontline Australians, but on another it tells us about ourselves: who we read, who we watch, who we listen to, who we cheer for, who we aspire to be, and who we'll never forget. The Companion is available to buy online and in the Portrait Gallery Store.

Michael Riley's portraits

Portrait story

Linda Burney, Brenda Croft and Darrell Sibosado share memories of Michael Riley and his photographic practice.

Tracey
Tracey
Tracey
Tracey

Sophisticated and glamorous

Magazine article by Amanda Rowell, 2015

Michael Riley’s early portraits by Amanda Rowell.

© National Portrait Gallery 2021
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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders past and present. We respectfully advise that this site includes works by, images of, names of, voices of and references to deceased people.

This website comprises and contains copyrighted materials and works. Copyright in all materials and/or works comprising or contained within this website remains with the National Portrait Gallery and other copyright owners as specified.

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. The use of images of works of art reproduced on this website and all other content may be restricted under the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). Requests for a reproduction of a work of art or other content can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency