WIK AND KUGU ARTS CENTRE

Wik and Kugu Arts Centre began as an independent arts initiative in the 1990s and was officially established in 2001 to service artists from the five Aurukun clan groups:

Apalech, Puch, Sara, Wanam, and Winchanam.

Perched on the eastern edge of the Gulf of Carpentaria in remote Far North Queensland, the Art Centre comprises a men’s art studio and workshop, a women’s art studio – named after eminent artist Akay Ko’oila – and a gallery space.

To subscribe to the Wik & Kugu Arts Centre’s newsletter

or to place yourself on the wait list for artworks,

please visit the online catalogue.

The Centre is renowned for the exquisite wooden sculptures produced in the men’s workshop, which represent an extension of traditional cultural practices related to animal totems. 

In addition to the carved sculptures, the men produce bold ochre and charcoal works referencing traditional body painting designs, and more contemporary prints.  The women produce acrylic paintings mixed with ochre and are well known for their Aurukun-specific Feather Flowers.

 

The Centre acknowledges the financial support from the Commonwealth (Indigenous Visual Arts Industry Support) and State Governments.  

Akay Ko’oila Studio

The studio was funded by Arts Queensland for the establishment of a women’s painting studio to function as part of the WKAC. The studio was built to support Aurukun women with economic and employment opportunities. Akay herself took part in the very first painting development workshops, hosted by WKAC back in 2011, and became one of the most eminent painters that the WKAC has produced in the last two decades. 

Women’s artistic cultural traditions are drawn predominantly from weaving and painting with celebrated talents such as the late Mavis Ngallametta and Akay Koo’oila being two of the most highly acclaimed artists to venture out of Aurukun and onto the world stage. Woman’s artistic practices have seen a long hiatus since the likes of Akay and Mavis were around, however, a renewed program focus for the Wik & Kugu Arts Centre will once again see high-calibre fine artists take to the stage once again.

The re-activation of the Akay Studio, a space originally built to support the artistic abilities of women, will be an arts development focus for The Wik & Kugu Arts Centre. Creative workshops for women have begun and are helping to support established and emerging fine arts practitioners, helping women once again connect with the art market and continue their artistic traditions.

To subscribe to the Wik & Kugu Arts Centre’s newsletter

or to place yourself on the wait list for artworks,

please visit the online catalogue.

Wik and Kugu Upstairs Gallery

The Up Stairs Gallery at the centre has a large range of stock currently for sale, if you are looking for that new and wonderful gift for a love one for Christmas. The gallery has a large selection of items for viewing and sale.  You are also welcome to meet the artists in their workshop.

Current Exhibitions

Wik and Kugu artists are currently exhibiting at Maunsell & Wickes Gallery at Paddington in Sydney.

Cultural Revitalisation

The Wik & Kugu Arts Centre has embarked on a “Cultural Revitalisation Program” to support the Cultural Heritage belonging to Aurukun.

The program includes a reactivation of women’s artistic abilities and the introduction of an in-house digital media lab to support Wik & Kugu artists storytelling abilities through language. The program also includes plans to create a “Cultural Welcoming” space at the centre to support enhanced education of Wik & Kugu arts heritage for visitors, to provide safe access to the facility for the public, and to create an arts space that the whole community can feel proud of.

Painting and Weaving

To subscribe to the Wik & Kugu Arts Centre’s newsletter

or to place yourself on the wait list for artworks,

please visit the online catalogue.

 

 

Support the Artists

Visitors and residents are encouraged to purchase artworks in Aurukun direct from the Gallery.  By purchasing your artworks from the Gallery, you are supporting the artists and the future of our Gallery.

If visiting the Gallery, you are welcome to chat with our artists and see their works progressing from raw materials into a fine work of art.

Contact the Gallery on 40606843.

The Wik and Kugu Arts Centre is enterprised by Aurukun Shire Council. If you can’t make it to Aurukun in person you can call Art Centre Manager to organise a private online tour and viewing of the works at close range.

To subscribe to the Wik & Kugu Arts Centre’s newsletter or to place yourself on the wait list for artworks, please visit the online catalogue.

Contact the Gallery on 40606843.