Lake Macquarie History


To enhance the museum’s ongoing commitment to Aboriginal programming in partnership with the Aboriginal Reference Group, a sub-collection focusing on Aboriginal works on paper was established in 2010.

The collection was launched with the purchase of Dennis Nona’s etching Sarup Au Zig (lost man) (2007) from the 2009 art museum-curated exhibition Art Out of Water: the Fish of Art, with support from the MAC Society.

Over years the collection has expanded to include a range of media. Alongside the Nona etching and a group of key works by Jonathan Jones Untitled (salt) 6 (2010) and Untitled (white poles) 1–3 (2004); this collection now boasts pieces by Douglas Archibald, Ruby Djikarra Alderton, Eubena Nampitjin, Ningie Nangala, Dorothy Napangardi, Kathleen Paddoon, Freddie Timms, Jason Wing and Judy Watson.

In 2015, the art museum acquired two important works by Judy Watson – the artist book, under the act (2007), comprising 20 etchings that explore the history of the artist’s family as it has lived under colonialism, and heron island suite (2009), 20 print works exploring the impact of global warming and pollution on the Great Barrier Reef.

2021 saw the launch of the yapang Emerging Art Prize and the acquisition of winning sculptural work Shedding Serpents (2021) by Barkindji artist Maddison Gibbs. The work is inspired by Aboriginal female ancestors and addresses national and global issues of race and feminist politics. The biennial prize was developed to celebrate, promote and support emerging Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists from across the country.

The yapang sub-collection will continue to grow through purchase and donation, greatly supported by the MAC Society.

Acknowledgement of Country

We remember and respect the Ancestors who cared for and nurtured this Country. It is in their footsteps that we travel these lands and waters. Lake Macquarie City Council acknowledges the Awabakal people and Elders past, present and future.

Council acknowledges traditional custodians throughout Australia. We commit to listening deeply to and collaborating with First Peoples in our work.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website and Council's cultural collections may contain images, voices or names of deceased persons in photographs, film, audio recordings or printed material.

This website may contain place names, opinions and terms that reflect authors' views or those of the period in which the item was written or recorded. These may not be considered appropriate today.

If you experience any issues with the website or its content please contact us [email protected]