At least one of my regular readers would have loved to be at the Gallery East opening this evening [All turn and look at Will]. Greg Weight’s ‘Artists of the Western Desert’ comprises eleven portraits of Western Desert artists – from Kintore, Haast Bluff, Yuendumu and Alice Springs. The opening was a small, even intimate gathering. I recognised a number of stars of the art world, but someone explained that they were there as neighbours and old friends of Greg and Carol Ruff, his partner and the owner of the gallery, rather than as A-listers.
Long Jack Philipus Tjakamara dominates the gallery’s front window.
In lieu of speeches, Carol Ruff and friend played ukulele and sang – among other things, Carol’s own song ‘Finding Love in CLOVElly’ – and were joined on the bongos by the artist photographer, seen here in the right foreground. The Indigenous artist beaming down from the wall is Yukultjii Napangati, a Pintipu woman who came in out of the desert in 1984 when she was about 14 years old.
The exhibition lasts until 23 May. If you miss it at Clovelly, you may be able to catch it at the Musée Branly in Paris in the next year or so.