West Kimberley

The West Kimberley region is known for the highly skilled independent artists who continue the iconic tradition of incising pearl shell, as well as for the glowing acrylic canvases emanating from the art-making community of Bidyadanga and the beautiful hand-printed textiles from Nagula Jarndu Designs in Broome.

The port of Broome is found here, renowned for its unique multicultural history and vibrant landscape. The coastline is spectacular, with sculpted red pindan cliffs, white sandy beaches and aqua waters extending north up the Dampier Peninsula and south to Bidyadanga.

As in other areas of the Kimberley, this region has seen migrations and resettlement of people from their traditional homelands elsewhere. The Yulparitja now resident at Bidyadanga include some of the last people to walk out of the Great Sandy Desert in 1974. Their artwork is informed by their recent saltwater experience as well as their desert heritage.

Prominent language groups within this region include the Yawuru, Bardi, Jawi, Nyul Nyul, Jabirrjabirr, Ngumbarl, Nimanburu, Jukun, Yawuru, Nyikina and Karajarri, some of which also feature a number of dialects. Many artists within the East Kimberley have kinship relationships which extend throughout the Kimberley and well beyond their own traditional Country.