Colin Walangari Karntawarra McCormack is an Australian Aboriginal Artist and Aboriginal Elder from Alice Springs who now lives and works in Sydney. Multi-talented, he is also a gifted musician, Aboriginal cultural teacher, public speaker and Aboriginal Cultural performer with a wonderful stage presence.

He is an international award winning “Central Western Desert” painter and his colourful and spellbinding works tell the traditional Dreaming Stories of the world’s oldest living culture.

Walangari’s work has been exhibited extensively both in Australia and internationally. He uses his art as a means of cross-cultural communication and he is dedicated to improving the lot of his people.


Arrernte, of the Central and Western Desert

Born in 1961, Walangari is of the Arrernte, Luritja, Warlpiri, Yankunytjatjara, Pintubi, Anmatjerre and Alyawarre peoples of the Central and Western Desert.

aboriginal walangari karntawarra visiting standley chasm near alice springs

Walangari visiting Standley Chasm – his family’s traditional Aboriginal homelands

aboriginal walangari museum of sydney with art and boomerangs

Walangari at the Museum of Sydney with his Art & Boomerangs

Family of Albert Namatjira and Papunya Tula’s Clifford Possum and Paddy Carroll

His early childhood was spent living a traditional lifestyle in the Australian outback. His direct family line includes the famous Aboriginal Artist and water colourist Albert Namatjira and two of the founding fathers of the Papunya Tula movement, Clifford Possum and Paddy Carroll.


CAAMA and Imparja

Made a ward of the state at 7 years of age, Walangari went on to gain two university degrees and hold many executive positions and directorships of various Aboriginal Councils. He chaired CAAMA (the Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association), the first Aboriginal owned radio station and was a director of the first Aboriginal television station, Imparja. He is committed to helping ensure that the voice of Aboriginal Australia is heard.

Walangari’s life and paintings have been featured in many television documentaries and publications including the “International Artist” magazine.

The National Gallery of Australia has acquired one of his early works.

Traditional and Contemporary Aboriginal Art

While his paintings tell the traditional stories of his people and feature the iconography of the “Western Desert”, Walangari uses a fuller colour spectrum and unique effects to forge a striking path within contemporary Aboriginal Art.

In 1995 he painted the first prize for the inaugural Indigenous Surfing Competition sponsored by Billabong and Coca Cola.

The Australian Museum featured Walangari in the CD ROM that they produced as part of their “Living Colour” exhibition in March 2000.

He was commissioned to paint a work for the Rugby World Cup Paris Exhibition in 2003 and in the same year his work featured in the annual selling exhibition “Art Paris” in the Carrousel du Louvre.

In June 2008 he was awarded the “Green Leaf Award” for artistic excellence in painting by the United Nations Environment Program and the Natural World Museum.

Walangari won the 2010 Deadly Visual Artist of the Year Award.

Australian & International Art Exhibitions

  • 2022 “The Other Art Fair”, Sydney
  • 2018 “From the Desert to the Sea” (solo) Novotel Manly, Sydney
  • 2016 “All the Best Group Exhibition” Soho Galleries, Sydney
  • 2016 “Art Singapore”, Singapore
  • 2015 “Art Taipei”, Taiwan
  • 2015 “Outback to Abstract” Chifley Tower, Sydney
  • 2015 “Sharing the Dreamtime” Gallery 123, Four Seasons Hotel, Sydney
  • 2014 “Talking Together” Kerrie Lowe Gallery, Sydney
  • 2014 “Abstraction” Soho Galleries, Sydney
  • 2013 “All the Best” Soho Galleries, Sydney
  • 2013 “Songlines” Willoughby City Council Chambers
  • 2011 “Old Way, New Way” Hurstville Museum and Gallery
  • 2011 “Desert Stars”, IHK Cologne
  • 2010 “Blue Lightning Dreaming” (solo) Soho Galleries, Sydney
  • 2010 “All the Best” Soho Galleries, Sydney
  • 2009 “Colours of the Rainbow Serpents” (solo) Soho Galleries, Sydney
  • 2008 “Songlines” (solo) Soho Galleries, Sydney
  • 2008 Pymble Gallery, Sydney
  • 2008 “25 Years” Galerie Le Cocon, Hamburg
  • 2008 “Black & White” Kate Owen Gallery, Sydney
  • 2008 “Kick the Carbon Habit”, The Museum of NZ, Te Papa
  • 2008 Mark Hutchins Gallery, Wellington
  • 2007 “Walangari & Friends” The Kate Owen Gallery, Sydney
  • 2007 “All the Best”, Soho Galleries, Sydney
  • 2007 Earth & Spirit”, Erie Art Museum, PA, USA
  • 2007 Galerie Le Cocon, Hamburg
  • 2006 Shanghai Art Fair, Shanghai
  • 2005 Black Fella’s Dreaming, Darlinghurst, Sydney
  • 2005 The Outback Gallery, Sydney
  • 2004 Batchelor Institute, NT
  • 2003 Art Paris, Carrousel du Louvre, Paris
  • 2003 L’Art Emmele Exhibition, City Hall, Paris
  • 2002 Xzibit, McMahons Point, Sydney
  • 2002 Lotus Gallery Surfers Paradise QLD
  • 2001 Phat Cat, Invercargill, New Zealand
  • 2000 Aust. Olympic Exhibition, Galeries Lafayette, Paris
  • 1999 Galerie Luc Queyrel, 34, rue Mazarine, Paris
  • 1999 Michael Carr Gallery, Sydney
  • 1998 Heart of Australia, Sydney Airport
  • 1998 Private Gallery, Brussels
  • 1997 Aboriginal Art and Cultural Centre, Alice Springs
  • 1997 Bruce Watling Gallery, Southport
  • 1997 Father John Thierry School, Sydney
  • 1997 Musee Espace, Beziers, France
  • 1997 The Elizabeth Gallery, Sydney
  • 1997 World Heritage Collection, NSW State Parliament
  • 1996 Vienna Hilton, Vienna
  • 1996 Volerkunde Muesum, Vienna
  • 1995 Gondawana Gallery, Alice Springs
  • 1995 Mountain Artery, Katoomba
  • 1995 Old Circus, Paris
  • 1995 Wagner Gallery, Sydney
  • 1994 Dreamtime Gallery, Santa Fe
  • 1994 Gallery Savah, Sydney
  • 1994 Holdsworth Gallery, Sydney
  • 1994 Third Annual World Tattoo Convention, Frankfurt
  • 1994 Wagner Gallery, Hong Kong
  • 1993 Parker Gallery, Sydney

Australian & International Art Collections

  • Australian National Gallery, Canberra
  • Stuttgart Museum, Germany
  • Costello Collection, Sydney
  • Kneed-McDaid Collection, Sydney
  • Jagamarra Collection, Sydney
  • Mural, University of NSW, Sydney
  • Coomalie Cultural Centre, Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education, Northern Territory
  • Romer Collection, Germany
  • Grafton Regional Gallery

Artist in Residence

  • Global Colours, Sydney
  • Jagamarra Productions, Sydney
  • Saga Fjord, Cruise Ship
  • Museum of Sydney, Sydney
  • Dymocks Sydney Inaugural Artist of the Month, Sydney
  • Master Artist in Residence, Coomalie Cultural Centre, Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education, NT
aboriginal walangari karntawarra plays didgeridoo

Walangari playing the Didgeridoo on Bondi beach

Learn about Walangari’s creative process and Dreamings by watching this informative video, or browsing his current gallery of Aboriginal Paintings for Sale.

Creative Process Video Current Gallery

You can see many of Walangari’s latest events by visiting Walangari Karntawarra on Instagram