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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

The Gallery’s Acknowledgement of Country, and information on culturally sensitive and restricted content and the use of historic language in the collection can be found here.

David Malangi Daymirringu

1986
Martin van der Wal

inkjet print on rag paper, edition 2/30 (sheet: 42.0 cm x 29.7 cm, image: 25.3 cm x 25.3 cm)

David Malangi Daymirringu (1927-1999), Manyarrngu (Yolgnu) bark painter, printer and designer, was born at Mulanga, near the mouth of the Glyde River, just before Christian missionaries arrived on the nearby island of Milingimbi. For some years he painted only for ritual purposes, but in the 1960s he began painting commercially as well. In 1966 he gained nationwide fame when one of his paintings was reproduced on the new $1 note (without his permission); in the first-ever assertion of ‘copyright’ of traditional designs, he protested, and was recompensed with a commemorative medallion, $1000 and some fishing equipment. In 1979 Malangi and fellow Ramingining artists George Milpurrurru and Johnny Bonguwuy became the first Aboriginal artists to show their work at the Biennale of Sydney. His work featured in Australian Perspecta at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in 1983 and Dreamings in New York in 1988; he travelled to the opening of the latter with Jimmy Wululu. Malangi created ten poles for the Aboriginal Memorial and was one of three Yolngu people who sang the work into place at the National Gallery in 1988. In 1998 he received an honorary doctorate from the Australian National University. The National Gallery staged No Ordinary Place: the art of David Malangi in 2004.

Purchased 2005
© Martin van der Wal

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. Works of art from the collection are reproduced as per the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). The use of images of works from the collection may be restricted under the Act. Requests for a reproduction of a work of art can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

Artist and subject

Martin van der Wal (age 33 in 1986)

David Malangi Daymirringu (age 59 in 1986)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders past and present. We respectfully advise that this site includes works by, images of, names of, voices of and references to deceased people.

This website comprises and contains copyrighted materials and works. Copyright in all materials and/or works comprising or contained within this website remains with the National Portrait Gallery and other copyright owners as specified.

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. The use of images of works of art reproduced on this website and all other content may be restricted under the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). Requests for a reproduction of a work of art or other content can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency