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Lorraine Connelly-Northey places the Australian Outback into the heart of Sydney Modern

1 min read  ·  16 Mar 2023

Installation view of Lorraine Connelly-Northey's Narrbong-galang (many bags) (2022) in the Yiribana Gallery, Sydney Modern. Copyright Lorraine Connelly-Northey, photo, Zan Wimberley

Installation view of Lorraine Connelly-Northey's Narrbong-galang (many bags) (2022) in the Yiribana Gallery, Sydney Modern. Copyright Lorraine Connelly-Northey, photo, Zan Wimberley

Lorraine Connelly-Northey is an Australian artist of mixed ancestry who is considered a pioneer of indigenous art. She is best known for sculptures made from found objects, typically rusty metal.

Connelly-Northey's HENI Score increased an impressive 186% when her large-scale commission for the new Sydney Modern was unveiled. HENI News scores are based on an artist's media coverage, exhibitions and market. To find out more about Lorraine Connelly-Northey, see her HENI Dashboard.

Born in 1962, Connelly-Northey lives and works on Waradgerie (Wiradjuri) Country, New South Wales. She was one of nine artists selected to create a major work for the Art Gallery of New South Wales' new wing, Sydney Modern. Her contribution is an installation of narrbong-galang (bags) made from rusted and bent metal she found in remote areas of the Outback.

Maud Page, a curator at the Art Gallery of NSW, told ARTnews: “She is renowned for her use of found materials, particularly corrugated iron, to create large, visually stunning works that are deeply embedded in her cultural heritage.”

Connelly-Northey has spoke in the past about the frustration she felt when people were not interested in her non-Aboriginal heritage, "when I started to do pretty good as an Aboriginal artist". She told Frieze magazine: "Everything has always been black and white in Australia, so I changed my name to include my black and white heritage."