Rupert Jack | Artist Profile

Details of Rupert Jack


Mother's Country: Indulkana Community, APY Lands
Father's Country: Nyapari Community, APY Lands

"Jack's enigmatic pots use the clay surface as the palimpsest upon which to place his unique take on the traditional stories and legends from his community at Ernabella.." (Glenn Barkley, 2016)
Rupert Jack is a senior Pitjantjatjara artist at Ernabella Arts working between the painting and ceramics studios. He is also the community pastor. He lives between his homeland, a place named Racecourse, and Ernabella (Pukatja) community.
"I was born in Mimili in 1951. I was still a little baby when I moved to Kenmore with my father and mother. My father worked for white-fellas digging wells and anything else. I stayed in Kenmore until I was a man. Then I moved to Ernabella for marriage. I have been a priest for over 20 years. I spent a long time travelling around, everywhere, Western Australia, Northern Territory, working for the church. Talking and singing, Inma. I still know traditional Tjukurpa. These are good stories for Anangu. They show you how to look after your people." (Rupert Jack)

Rupert Jack is renowned for his striking hand built forms that speak of his country, law and faith. His work depicts the maku (witchetty grub), tjala (honey ants), ili (bush fig), kaltu kaltu (bush seed that is ground into a flour to make a kind of damper and also Rupert’s father’s name) and ngata (bush berry) dreaming, as well as biblical stories of Moses and Abraham.

Informed by his knowledge of both traditional stories and the bible his work often draws connections between the two. Interestingly he employs the same visual language and iconography to depict both themes.

In 2016 Rupert was featured in the Australian Biennale of Ceramics, curated by Glenn Barkley. In the catalogue Barkley described Rupert's work as celebrating "clays talismanic potential." In 2017 Rupert continued to develop his ceramic practice, exhibiting works at Alcaston Gallery, Araluen Art Centre, Sturt Gallery and Harvard Arts (USA). He was also a finalist in the 2017 Muswellbrook Ceramic Prize.
Rupert's art had been acquired by the National Museum of Australia and ArtBank.
In 2017 Rupert also featured in Clay Stories: Contemporary Indigenous Ceramics from Remote Australia, at JamFactory, presented by Sabbia Gallery, Sydney for Tarnanthi: Festival of Contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art. Clay Stories is touring to regional galleries throughout 2018 and 2019.
2018 Desert Mob 2018, Araluen Art Centre
2018 Weapons for Soldier, Hazelhurst Regional Gallery
2017 Nyuyuntjaku: Keeping the Fire Alive- New Paintings and Ceramics by the Artist of Ernabella Arts, Harvey Arts, USA
2017 In these Hands, Mara Nyangangka, Sturt Gallery, Mittagong NSW
2017 Desert mob 2017, Araluen Arts Centre, Alice Springs NT
2017 Spirited, Kurunitja, Short St gallery, Broome WA
2017 NATSIAA, MAGNT, Darwin, NT
2017 Ngura Kutjupa, Walytja Kutju: Different communities, one family - Tangentyere Artists, Alice Springs, NT
2017 Clay Stories: Indigenous ceramics from remote Australia - Sabbia Gallery, Sydney NSW
2017 Artists of the APY Lands: 2017 - Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne VIC
2016 Nganampa Kililpi Kuwartija Tjuta pakani: Our Rising Stars - Hazelhurst Regional Community Gallery, NSW
2016 Nganampa Kililpil: Our Stars - Hazelhurst Regional Gallery & Arts Centre
2016 Desert Mob - Araluen Arts Centre
2016 Paluru tjukurpa pulka kanyilpai: He keeps our stories safe - raft Artspace, Alice Springs NT
2016 Art from the APY Lands - Woolloongabba Art Gallery, Brisbane, QLD
2016 Australian Ceramics Biennale: OVERUNDERSIDEWAYSDOWN - Manly Art Gallery & Museum
2015 Tjukurpa Kunpu / Strong Culture: HOLIDAY SHOW 2015-2016 - Harvey Art Projects, USA
2015 Desert Mob - Araluen Arts Centre
2015 Wati tjuta-ku Tjukurpa kunpu ngaranyi – All the men have strong stories, always there - raft Artspace, Alice Springs NT
2015 Yangupala Tjuta Waakarinyi (Many Young People Working) - Sabbia Gallery, Paddington NSW
2015 Paysages Aborigènes incarnés de l’APY land (Incarnated Aboriginal landscape from the APY lands) - Aboriginal Signature, Brussels
2015 Colours of Nature: Australian contemporary art - Shinsegae gallery, Korea
2014 Tjulpirpa wiya - Clay! - raft Artspace, Alice Springs NT
2014 Desert Mob 2014 - Araluen Art Centre, Alice Springs NT
2014 Nganana Kulilpai Nganampa Tjukurpa - Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne VIC
2014 Tjungu Warkarintja: Fifteen Years - Sabbia Gallery, Paddington NSW
2013 Ernabella Ceramics - Raft ArtSpace, Alice Springs NT
2013 Desert Mob 2013 - Araluen Art Centre, Alice Springs NT
2013 ReGeneration: established & emerging talents of Indigenous Art - McCulloch & McCulloch, Shoreham, VIC
2013 Putitja: From Spinifex Country - Aboriginal and Pacific Art Gallery, Sydney NSW
2013 APY Survey Exhibition - Outstation Gallery, Darwin NT
2012 Desert Mob 2012 - Araluen Arts Centre, Alice Springs NT
2012 Uwankara Kurunpa Kutju-Tjara - Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne VIC
2012 Kapi Ukalinganyi - Aboriginal and Pacific Art, Sydney NSW
2011 Ernabella Undiscovered - Tunbridge Gallery, Margaret River WA
2011 Nganana Ngura-ku Ninti, Nganana Ngura Kanyini (We know our land, we keep our Land) - raft Artspace, Alice Springs NT
2011 Ngura Kutju, Tjukurpa Pulkatjara, Short St Gallery, Broome, WA
2010 A Watiku Exhibition, Raft Artspace, Alice Springs, NT

2017 - Finalist, NATSIAA, MAGNT, Darwin, NT

Ara iritja, ara kuwaritja
Old Testament Stories

Acrylic on Canvas, Wood, Ceramics


2016 OVERUNDERSIDEWAYSDOWN (exhibition catalogue) featured within, The Journal of Australian Ceramics (Vol 55 No 1)

Artworks of Rupert Jack

    This artist currently has no artworks for sale, please view some recent sold works below.