Pilbara Aboriginal artists bring annual Colours of our Country exhibition to Central Park

04 September 2017

Rio Tinto is proud to present the 12th annual Colours of our Country exhibition, showcasing work by Aboriginal artists and art groups from Western Australia’s Pilbara region.

Rio Tinto Iron Ore chief executive Chris Salisbury said "The exhibition provides an important platform for featured Aboriginal artists to express and relay their passion for their country, culture and traditions with a Perth audience.

"Rio Tinto’s strong relationship with Aboriginal artists in the Pilbara and regional WA helps us better understand and appreciate the intrinsic link Aboriginal people have to their land with over 50 thousand years of history and heritage.

"We are proud to be showcasing these special artworks for the 12th year, helping to support these very talented artists by providing an outlet to help preserve their culture and stories for the generations to come."

Mr Salisbury and Her Excellency, the Honourable Kerry Sanderson AC, Governor of Western Australia, will officially open the exhibition tonight and welcome artists-in-residence Jill Churnside and Wendy Warrie to the event.

Pictured: (L-R Art Gallery of Western Australia Director Stefano Carboni, artist Violet Samson, Her Excellency, the Honourable Kerry Sanderson, Governor of Western Australia, artist in residence Jill Churnside and Rio Tinto Iron ore chief executive Chris Salisbury)

The exhibition will be open to the public from tomorrow in the foyer of the Central Park building in Perth until 15 September 2017.

Since its launch the exhibition has generated more than $2.2 million in sales for the artists, their art groups and communities with more than 2,115 works sold.

This year’s exhibition will feature more than 310 paintings and artefacts from 30 Pilbara-based Aboriginal artists. It showcases independent artists from Roebourne, Pannawonica and Tom Price, as well as artists from Roebourne Art Group, Yinjaa-Barni Art Centre, Cheeditha Art Group and Bornugorndi Artefacts.

The works will be available to purchase with proceeds going to the art groups and artists.

The exhibition includes an artist-in-residence programme during the first week that will provide visitors with an opportunity to personally interact with the artists in the Central Park foyer.

Rio Tinto has gifted a piece of artwork from this year’s exhibition to the Art Gallery of West Australia (AGWA) State Art Collection with the help of Indigenous art curator Ms Carly Lane.

For more information and to view the 2017 exhibition catalogue, please visit riotinto.com/coloursofourcountry