Skin: Milipurrula (White Cockatoo)
Michelle Bush was born in Milikapiti and has raised a family of four children in the community. Before she joined Jilamara, she worked at the Milikapiti Primary School as an assistant teacher while her children were in attendance. With all of her children now fully grown, Michelle has more time to focus on her artistic practice.
Michelle paints ‘parlini jilamara’, which is old Tiwi design that was painted onto the body during traditional Tiwi pukumani, kulama and smoking ceremonies. The red, yellow and white Michelle uses in her works are natural ochres collected from the local area around Milikapiti, Melville Island. She has also created a screen-printed design for Jilamara Art’s textile line.
Michelle is also employed at Jilamara as an arts worker and has been a strong female leader on the Executive Committee. She was the elected President of the organisation for the year of 2019 and is also a substitute director of the ANKAA organisation, a collective of representatives from art centres across Australia’s top end.
Michelle has been painting at Jilamara since the beginning of 2016 and has represented the art centre at a growing number of group exhibitions, art fairs, event launches and governance conferences.
2022 Yimunga (tribe), Tactile Arts, Darwin
YOYI: Care, Repair, Heal, Gropius Bau, Berlin
Bowness Photography Prize, finalist exhibition Monash Gallery of Art, VIC
Ngininguwula Kurrujipuni (Our Tiwi Ochre Colours), Double Tree Hilton, Darwin
YOYI (dance), Fiona and Sidney Myer Gallery, University of Melbourne, VIC
2021 Tiwi Artists, Tiwi Papers, Tarnanthi at Art Gallery South Australia, Adelaide, SA
Jilamara Artists, Japingka Gallery, Fremantle, WA
Yirrinkirripwoja, Tiwi Exhibition, Double Tree Hilton, Darwin
2020 Yalininga Ngaripantingija Ngirramini, Aboriginal Signature Gallery, Brussels, Belgium
Awurankini Jana Yimaninmarrampilya Ningani, Karluwu Ngini Ngawula Ngima, Double Tree Hilton, Darwin
2019 turnuwa amintiya kirijipuni, Short Street Gallery, Broome, WA
PUPUNI JILAMARA NGININGWULA, Doubletree by Hilton Darwin, NT
Tarnanthi Art Fair, Tandanya, Adelaide, SA
2018 Nginingawula Awirankiniwaki, Double Tree Hilton, Darwin, NT
2017 Mamirnikiwi Jilamara, Short Street Gallery, Broom, NT
Yirringinkiri Pwoja, Hilton Double Tree, Darwin, NT
Kluge-Ruhe Art Museum, USA