Donna Leslie: Alitji in Dreamland

15 Oct–8 Nov 1992

ACCA, Dallas Brooks Drive, The Domain

Donna Leslie is a painter belonging to the Gamilaroi people of New South Wales. Her paintings are often inspired by the natural world. She has worked on creative projects for over 30 years, and these have included solo and group exhibitions, commissions, artist residencies, designs, illustrations and cartoons. Leslie exhibited nationally in the 1980s and early 1990s, but since the mid-1990s she has rarely shown her work publicly, except in publications. She works with a range of media, especially watercolour, ink and gouache on paper.
In 1993, Leslie won the ‘Crichton Award for Children’s Book Illustration’ for her illustrations in Alitji in Dreamland: Alitjinya Ngura Tjukurmankuntjala (Simon and Schuster, 1992), a translation of Alice in Wonderland in an Aboriginal context. The complete series of 33 original illustrations was exhibited at ACCA in 1992.
Leslie is also an art historian, and a trained and experienced teacher and art museum curator. Her writing is inspired by Indigenous, colonial and contemporary Australian art. Her doctorate in the discipline of Art History is a specialisation in Aboriginal art, and an important milestone in the field. Leslie is author of the book, Aboriginal Art: Creativity and Assimilation (Macmillan, 2008). Her recent published writings explore contemporary art and its relationship to the sacred and cross-cultural, and Australian art of the nineteenth century.


Donna Leslie