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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.

The Gallery’s Acknowledgement of Country, and information on culturally sensitive and restricted content and the use of historic language in the collection can be found here.

Arkutja (woman)

2022
Marlene Rubuntja and Yarrenyty Arltere Artists (artist collective)

soft sculpture made with recycled woollen blankets, bush dye, wool, cotton, feathers (overall (irregular): 177.7 cm x 52.0 cm depth 22.0 cm)
Image not available (NC)

Arrernte/Western Arrarnta woman Marlene Panankga Rubunjta is a senior

artist and spokeswoman for the Yarrenyty Arltere Artists, a filmmaker,

writer and mental health activist. Following in the footsteps of her

father, artist and activist Wenten Rubuntja, she highlights mental

health awareness in the desert, creating artworks drawn from memories

and the world around her. She is widely known for her distinct use of

bright colour and pattern work that evokes a sense of happiness and

humour, often speaking to the importance of finding joy in our everyday

lives. These self-portrait sculptures are representations of Marlene –

as a strong cultural woman and artist who has overcome many life

struggles, including significant loss and grief. Collectively, the

portraits speak to the differing expressions of self, highlighting the

multitude of identities that exist within each of us.

Purchased 2023

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

Yarrenyty Arltere Artists

Marlene Rubuntja (age 62 in 2022)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

© National Portrait Gallery 2024
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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