ARTIST: Brian Robinson was born in 1973 and grew up in the idyllic tropical surroundings of the Torres Strait Islands, located between the tip of Cape York Peninsula and Papua New Guinea. During this time in his life, he gained valuable knowledge and appreciation of the culture of his people and was particularly influenced by the myths and legends of the Torres Strait, traditional motifs and the natural carving ability of the Islanders. He is a multi-skilled contemporary artist, whose practice includes painting, printmaking, sculpture and design. The graphic style in his practice combines his Torres Strait Islander heritage with a strong passion for experimentation, both in theoretical approach and medium, as well as crossing the boundaries between reality and fantasy. The results combine styles as diverse as graffiti art through to intricate relief carvings and construction sculpture echoing images of Torres Strait cultural motifs, objects and activity.
ARTWORK DETAILS: Tagai (guardian of the heavens), linocut printed in black ink from one block on 350 GSM off white Hahnemühle paper, edition of 50, 800 mm x 2200 mm, 2007.
ARTWORK STORY: The mythology of Tagai, Guardian of the Heavens, is a central motif for all Torres Strait Islanders alike. A vast star constellation comprising Centaurus, Lupus, Scorpio, Corus, Crux, Hydra and one star of Ara, Tagai brings about social and seasonal change through the Islands. Appearing in the night sky above the Torres Strait, Tagai is seen as a figure standing in a canoe with outstretched arms. In his left hand, the Southern Cross (Crux), he holds a fishing spear, and in his right (Corvus) a piece of red fruit.
Blak Flair is a KickArts creative merchandise project that has been generously supported by the Christensen Fund. The project aims to develop a collection of merchandise that portrays the work of Indigenous artists from Far North Queensland to promote their work and cultural importance to the broader community.
Dimensions: 210 x 150mm