Artbank acquires Vincent Namatjira
November 2013

Vincent Namatjira, Captain Cook, 2013, acrylic on canvas 101 x 76 cm. Collection: Artbank.

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We are delighted to announce that Artbank has acquired Vincent Namatjira's Captain Cook painting from our recent exhibition. Namatjira is the young grandson of the legendary Albert Namatjira, and an artist member of Iwantja Arts and Crafts, Indulkana, S.A.

Much of his work reflects his keen interest in the world around him: politics, current affairs and history, as well as Albert's story. Captain Cook was inspired by a school visit to HMB Endeavour as a student in Perth. Whilst on board, he began to imagine what kind of adventurous person Cook must have been to voyage to Australia.

Namatjira has decisively painted Cook without his ship. He has portrayed Cook as he believes the first contacted Indigenous peoples would have experienced him: as an Ocean Mamu, or seaman that arose from the ocean like a ghost. "This painting is important for me, because it's was the beginning of our shared history; everything after Cook was between all of us."