Aboriginal Artist Angelina Ngale

Angelina Ngale

Born: 1947

Language Group: Anmatyerre

Country: Ahalpere, Utopia Region, North East of Alice Springs

Medium: Acrylic on Canvas and Linen, Batik on Silk, Wood Carving

Subjects: Atham-areny Story, Anwekety (Conkerberry or Bush Plum), Awelye (Women's Ceremony and Body Paint Designs)

Born to Nellie Petyarre in the arid desert area of Utopia Station in 1947, Angelina Ngale has become an Australian renowned aboriginal artist, with her work held in collections nationally and internationally. Initially Angelina began in the medium of batik when this begun in the late 1970's at Utopia. When acrylics swept the Utopia region about a decade later, Angelina made the swift transition and has continued using this medium like other Utopia artists.

Becoming well known for her fine dot representations of the Anwekety (conkerberry, also known as conkleberry and bush plum), Angelina quickly became a household name amongst Australian Indigenous galleries. Like most other women, Angelina can paint the women's ceremonial body paint designs (Awelye) which she does so with bold and colourful feel, though she paints much less of this. Angelina also enjoys painting another subject, the story of Atham-areny. Atham-areny are small creatures that live where there is no fire. On a trip home to Utopia in January 2003 with Mbantua's field team, Angelina showed us the site of the Atham-areny story and agreed to paint this story for us. Angelina returned with her first two Atham-areny paintings later that month, both of which are now held in the Mbantua Gallery Permanent Collection. Her Atham-areny paintings depict the women prepared to sing and dance with witch doctors to draw sickness out of those touched by the atham-areny creatures.


Commonwealth Law Courts, Melbourne

Holmes á Court Collection, Perth

La Trobe University Collection, Melbourne

Mbantua Gallery Permanent Collection, Alice Springs

National Gallery, Victoria

National Gallery of Australia, Canberra Art Bank, Sydney

The National Museum of Art, Osaka, Japan

Solo Exhibitions

1999 Niagara Galleries, Melbourne
2001 Niagara Galleries, Melbourne



1989 Utopia Women's Paintings, the first works on canvas, Sydney
1989 Twelve Men and an Echidna, Utopia Art, Sydney
1990 The Last Show, Utopia Art, Sydney Art from Utopia, Orange Regional Gallery, NSW; Second Australian Contemporary Art Fair, Melbourne
1991 Long Hot Summer, Utopia Art, Sydney Utopia, Utopia Art, Sydney; Men and Dogs, Utopia Art, Sydney
1992 Bubbles, Baubles & Beads, Utopia Art, Sydney
1992 Aboriginal Painting, Austral Gallery, St Louis, USA
1992 Little Friends, Utopia Art, Sydney
1993 Utopia Women, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney
1993 Camp Scenes, Utopia Art Sydney, Sydney
1993 Utopia Sculpture, Niagara Galleries, Melbourne
1994 This Land, Utopia Art, Sydney
1994 The Oval Board Collection, Bishop Museum, Hawaii; Wadsworth Athenaeum, Connecticut; Tampa Museum of Art, Florida, USA
1994 Central Australia Aboriginal and Craft Exhibition, Araluen Centre, Alice Springs
1996 Painted People; Sculpture from Utopia, Utopia Art Sydney, Sydney; Fifth Australian Contemporary Art Fair, Melbourne
1997 14th National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Art Award, Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, Darwin; 28th Alice Prize, Araluen Centre for Arts and Entertainment, Alice Springs
1998 Dreamings, Spazio Pitti Arte, Florence, Italy
1998 Mbantua Gallery, Alice Springs, N.T
1998 Art Gallery 'Culture Store', Rotterdam, The Netherlands
1998 ixth Australian Contemporary Art Fair, Melbourne
1999 Blue Chip 11: The Collectors' Exhibition Niagara Galleries, Melbourne
2000 Not the done thing! Niagara Galleries, Sydney
2001 Spirituality and Australian Aboriginal Art, Madrid and touring regional Spain
2001 Mbantua Gallery, Alice Springs, N.T
2002 Mbantua Gallery USA exhibitions: Art and Soul Gallery, Nashville, TN; 'The Cove Gallery' Portland, OR; Urban Wine Works, Portland, OR; Mary's Woods, Portland, OR
2003 Mbantua Gallery USA exhibitions: New City Merchants, Knoxville, TN; Art and Soul Gallery, Nashville, TN; 'The Cove Gallery' Portland, OR; Mary's Woods, Portland, OR; Contemporary Aboriginal Art Event, Umpqua Bank in conjunction with Mbantua Gallery, Portland, Oregon USA; Art from the Dreamtime, Portland Art Museum, Portland OR
2004 'Last of the 20th Century', Mbantua Gallery, Alice Springs
2004 Mbantua Gallery USA exhibition; Nashville, Tennessee
2004 Evolution of Utopia, Mbantua Gallery Cultural Museum, Alice Springs
2005 'Small Wonders' (A collection of 1'x1' and 1'x1½' paintings), Mbantua Gallery, Alice Springs, N.T
2006 Camp Scenes and Utopia Life, Mbantua Gallery, Alice Springs
2008 Emily and Her Legacy, Hillside Gallery, Tokyo with Coo-ee Art Sydney in conjunction with the opening of the landmark retrospective exhibition Utopia – the Genius of Emily Kngwarreye at the National Art Centre, Tokyo, Japan



2006 Finalist – The 23rd Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award (NATSIAA)
2010 Finalist – The 27th Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award (NATSIAA)


Further References

Boulter, M. The Art of Utopia,Craftsman House Press, 1991, NSW
Isaacs, J. 'Bush Gardens' Art & Australia, Vol 35, No 4, 1998, Fine Arts Press, NSW
Kleinert, S and Neale M. The Oxford Companion to Aboriginal Art and Culture, 2000, Oxford University Press, NSW<