National Museum of Women in the Arts
Judy Watson
1959 - present
Photograph of Judy Watson, by Natasha Harth, courtesy of Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, Australia
Place of Birth:
Phonetic Spelling:
JOO-dee waht-suhn
Work Type/Media:
Drawings and prints, Painting, Sculpture
Artistic Role(s):
Installation Artist, Painter, Performance Artist, Printmaker, Sculptor, Set Designer
Traditional Art
Artist's Biography:
Art-school trained painter/printmaker Judy Watson was one of the three Aboriginal women artists included in the 1997 Venice Biennial. Her work traces her ancestral roots back to her great-grandmother and addresses issues related to women, politics, and the environment. Watson creates visual parables of her Aboriginal heritage, showing how history is embedded in the land, wounding and scarring it. She once said: "I get inspirations from my grandmother; I'm very close to her and very connected with her story through the matrilineal side of my family that's the Aboriginal side. And also country, just country everywhere, but particularly up in North West Queensland which is our area. I get really inspired and enriched by looking at collections in museums and art galleries around the place and by looking at other Aboriginal artists' work too; they're doing so much deadly stuff out there."
Other Occupation(s):
Curator , Instructor, Lecturer, Teacher, Trustee
Place(s) of Residence:
Where Trained/Schools:
Monash University, Gippsland, Australia (1986) University of Tasmania, Hobart, Australia (1980-1982) University of Southern Queensland, Toowoomba, Australia (1977-1979)
Fellowships, grants and awards:
Participant, Venice Biennial, Venice, Italy (1997) Fellowship, Moët & Chandon Australian Art Foundation, Victoria, Australia (1995) William Buttner Scholarship, Queensland Art Gallery, South Brisbane, Australia (1987)
Earliest exhibition:
Bloodline, Aboriginal Artists Gallery, Sydney, Australia (1988)
NMWA exhibition(s):
Dreaming Their Way: Australian Aboriginal Women Painters
Artist retrospective(s):
Judy Watson: Selected Works 1990–2005, University Art Museum, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia (2005-2006) Sacred Ground Beating Heart: Works by Judy Watson, 1989-2003, John Curtin University Gallery, Curtin University of Technology, Bentley, West Australia (2003)