Indigenous art -- a major attraction in Cairns

An Indigenous Art Exhibition at the Australian Embassy in Paris from  January 27 to May 20 will give local art lovers an opportunity to discover the talents of Dennis Nona*, who is widely acknowledged as one the most important Torres Strait Islander artists.

The exhibition will give a taste of the type of art that will be featured later this year at the annual Cairns Indigenous Art Fair, which takes place from August 19-21 – when Cairns will be transformed for three days with a programme of Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art, dance and music. More than a dozen art galleries and a similar number of Indigenous art centres will take part in the Cairns event.

The Cairns Indigenous Art Fair last year attracted collectors from around the world, and was also the subject of a UK television programme, with a BBC World film crew and host Griff Rhys Jones capturing the stories of Queensland’s artists.

Fact: the popularity of Aboriginal art is such that 417,000 international visitors to Queensland participated in Indigenous activities while on their trip within Australia last year.

*Born on Badu Island off Cape York in Tropical North Queensland in 1973 Denis Nona was taught as a young boy the traditional craft of woodcarving. His work can be seen in the collections of most of the major Australian art institutions and in several important overseas collections such as the Victoria and Albert Museum and Cambridge University Museum. He  was named recently as one of the 50 most collectable artists by Australian Art Collector magazine.