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Beerbee Mungnari / Red Butte – Nine Mile Creek

60cm x 60cm Ochre on Board, 2007

SKU: 11160

$1,250.00

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C. 1931 – 2011
Beerbee Mungnari was born on Waterloo Station, Northern Territory in c. 1931.  Like so many of the Kimberley painters of his generation, he was a stockman and drover, working on many stations including Argyle, Hahn Springs, Lissadell, Texas and Rosewood. 
Beerbee (pronounced Birribee) grew up on Rosewood, but recalls the family’s trips to Waterloo Station for holidays at Christmas.  After retiring from stock work, he lived for a time at Wyndham, then located to Turkey Creek, where he and his late wife worked in the school and taught the kids – “it was just a bow shed then, that school”. He has six children –  Denise Mung is an Emerging Artist and often paints in her father’s strong style, whilst his youngest daughter Marika is producing precise and delicately executed works still accompanied by the Dreaming Stories of the country that Beerbee has passed on to his family.
Beerbee lived for many years at Frog Hollow Community with his friends, senior artists Jack Britten and Henry Wambini but moved to Turkey Creek after they passed away. Beerbee painted his country where he was born and worked in a distinctive style. Until his death in December 2011, Beerbee was the Senior male ochre artist in the Kimberley Region and the last of the first generation male ochre artists.  

He is represented in Corporate and Private Collections worldwide including the National Gallery and his works are much sort after by collectors. A true gentleman, his passing leaves an indelible hole in the ochre art movement.

Solo Exhibitions
2004 
• Beerbee Mungnari, Alison Kelly Gallery, Melbourne, VIC
Selected Group Exhibitions
2010
• Beerbee Mungnari and Churchill Cann, Seva Frangos Art, Perth
2009
• Bardungel: The youngest one, Chapman Gallery, Canberra
2008
• Aboriginal Masterworks: Gala Opening, Gallery Sydney-East, Virginia, USA
2007
• From the ground up: Ochre work from the Kimberley, Chapman Gallery, ACT
• Warda-wurrarrem (all kinds of stars), Raft Artspace, NT
2006
• Gentlemen of Warmun (with Patrick Mung Mung, Churchill Cann, Gordon Barney, Tommy Carroll and Clancy Patrick), Seva Frangos Art, Perth
2005 
• Waterhole Country, Short Street Gallery, Broome, WA
2004 
• Big Country, Gallery Gondwana, Alice Springs, NT
• Tibet Meets Warmun, Fremantle Arts Centre, Fremantle, WA
2003 
• 3 Old Men, Span Gallery, Melbourne, VIC
2002 
• Warmun Country, Flinders University Art Museum, Adelaide, SA
• New Works from Warmun, Gallery Gabrielle Pizzi, Melbourne, VIC
• Recent Works from Warmun, Framed Gallery, Darwin, NT
• Munumburra: Wise Men of Warmun, Artplace, Perth, WA
2001
• Short on Size, Short Street Gallery, Broome, WA
Selected Collections
• National Gallery of Victoria
• Kerry Stokes Collection
• Prominent Private & Corporate Collections Worldwide

Texas Downs Station is between Warmun (Turkey Creek) and Purnululu (Bungle Bungles). The artist has painted a large mountain range (Red Butte) to the North East of the region, which is a well-known landmark. The main Ord River flows to the North and a tributary (Wagon Creek) runs between the gap in the mountains through the flatlands back towards Turkey Creek. The artist states that the Nine Mile is northwest and was used as a mustering camp because there was always good water around. There are still some old houses, knocked down mostly, at Nine Mile and the old cattle yards are still there. The artist worked as a contract stockman on the station which was one of the largest in the East Kimberley (now an outstation).

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