Campaign to buy back copyright of Albert Namatjira's images

Feb 27, 2017, 01:51 PM

Indigenous painter Albert Namatjira is widely regarded as one our greatest artists--his beautiful watercolour depictions of his country in central Australia stand apart in our artistic heritage.

Yet you may be surprised to learn that since his premature death in 1959, none of Namatjira's descendents have earned a cent from any reproductions of his work.

That's because the copyright to his estate was sold by the Northern Territory public trustee, reportedly without consultation with the Namatjira family, a deal which has been described as a major cultural injustice.

A new initiative called the 'Namatjira Legacy Trust' aims to right this alleged injustice by raising funds to buy back the copyright of Albert Namatjira's images from the family who now own it.

The campaign will be launched at the National Museum of Australia in Canberra on Friday.

From ABC RN Breakfast Among those leading the initiative is art curator and Indigenous woman Hetti Perkins, the daughter of the late Charlie Perkins, who's had a long association with the Namatjira family.