Central Australian artists witness collective’s Indigenous designs hitting fashion runways in Europe

Two Indigenous artists from a remote community in Central Australia have travelled across the globe to witness their designs being showcased on European fashion runways.

Artists Keturah Zimran and Roseranna Larry from Ikuntji (Haasts Bluff), 230 kilometres west of Alice Springs in the spectacular West MacDonnell Ranges are members of the local art collective, Ikuntji Artists, the first art centre established for women of the western desert art movement.

Since its inception in 1992, Ikuntji Artists has grown from a space for local women to participate in T-shirt printing workshops to become the home of world-renowned textiles.

The collective, which represents more than 100 local artists, works with galleries, retailers and art fairs within Australia and internationally.

Zimran has previously travelled to Germany and Switzerland for her art. She also attended Australian Fashion Week in Sydney earlier this year.

“I’m really, really happy about my designs and my paintings,” she told ABC Radio Darwin, just hours before boarding a flight to Paris.

“I’m so proud for my career.”

Prior to this trip, Larry had also travelled to Germany and Switzerland to see her designs displayed.

“I feel like I am really excited and really proud of myself … this is going to be very, very special,” Larry said.

Larry’s designs are depictions of her grandmother’s dreaming.

“My grandmother should be alive to hear me, that I’m travelling to Paris,” she said.

“My memory and my spirit are still there … [I’m going to] make them proud.”

Among the influential figures that have worn Ikuntji designs are pop star Jessica Mauboy, Minister for Indigenous Australians Linda Burney and Australian comedian Celeste Barber.