MEEKS, Arone Raymond .
30 November 1957
5 May 2021
India 1985; France 1989, 1992
Artist (painter) | Drawer | Illustrator | Printmaker
Worked: Australia (NSW, ACT, QLD) France. Linocuts, lithographs
Arone Raymond Meeks was born in Laura in Far North Queensland. This is his tribal area.
He has had both a traditional and formal education, having been taught by his grandfather and other relatives before going to study at the City Art Institute in Sydney. He later returned to Queensland to study with various tribal elders, including those of the Lardil people of Mornington Island.
Meeks values this combination of training and experience; his work employs both traditional images and themes arising out of his concern with the issue of land rights.
A former member of the Boomalli Aboriginal Artists Co-operative, he won an Australia Council fellowship to study in Paris in 1989 and went on to exhibit throughout Europe and North and South America.
Meeks began printmaking in 1982 in collaboration with printmaker Theo Tremblay. His work was also influenced by his participation in a cultural exchange to Santa Fe, in the United States, during the 1990s. He believes that: “Printmaking has given me another medium of creativity to explore. The directness and fluid qualities have made it possible to introduce a freshness and immediacy to my work. I begun to create a new language of symbols through this process”. He has a very keen eye for graphic detail and always works with several possibilities as he enters an intellectual discourse with the work.
He is well known for his illustrations for children’s books, including When The World Was New, This Is Still Rainbow Snake Country and The Pheasant and Kingfisher. He wrote and illustrated Enora and the Black Crane which won the 1992 UNICEF- Ezra Jack Keats Award for International Excellence in Children’ s Book Illustration.
Biography courtesy of the Australian Art Print Network, 2001.
Kukumidjii / Kukulanadiji peoples