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Philip Gudthaykudthay – Native Cat

$450.00 inc. GST

This superb screen print was created by Philip ‘Pussycat’ Gudthaykudthay, a renowned artist from Central Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory of Australia. The artist’s totem is native cat and this is the subject of this exquisite minimalist print.

Gudthaykudthay is estimated to have been born between 1925 and 1936 and was an acclaimed bark painter and member of Bula’bula Arts Aboriginal Corporation, Ramingining. He was actively making art until a few years ago.

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  • Limited edition screen-print on paper
  • Edition: 99
  • Editioned: October, 1998
  • Size: 40 x 58 cm (image), 56 x 76 cm (paper)
  • Paper: Magnani 350 gsm
  • Printer & Studio: Franck Gohier/Red Hand Prints Darwin NT

About the artist: Philip ‘Pussycat’ Gudthaykudthay

Skin name: Gamarrang
Language: Liyagalawumirr
Dreaming: Dhuwa
Clan: Liyagalawumirr

Born c1925 in the bush near Mulgurrum on the outskirts of Ramingining, Central Arnhem Land, Gudthaykudthay was the only child to father Lika and mother Ganinydja one of the Djardewitijibi Tribe. Gudthaykudthay’s mother’s country is Ramingining, making him a Senior Custodian (djunngayi) of Ramingining. Gudthaykudthay paints both his mother’s and his father’s country.

Before painting, Gudthaykudthay worked as a stockman, truck driver, fencer, and crocodile hunter selling crocodile skins to the Milingimbi Mission.

Gudthaykudthay learnt the skills of painting in the 1960s, at the Nangalala Mission on the Glyde River, under the instruction of his half-brother Mirritja. Gudthaykudthay soon developed an individual style consisting of abstract landscape designs, which were exhibited as fine art, devoid of ethnographical details in their exhibition (Garry Anderson Gallery, Sydney, 1983).

Gudthaykudthay’s first recorded exhibition, Traditions and Innovations, was held in 1979 at the Legislative Assembly in Darwin. It was not till 1983 that Gudthaykudthay had his first solo exhibition, held at the Garry Anderson Gallery, Sydney. This exhibition consisted of bark paintings, featuring abstract landscape designs and clan patterns. The National Gallery of Australia acquired two of these bark paintings.

Gudthaykudthay created five Dupan (Hollow Logs) for the renowned 1988 Aboriginal Memorial, an installation of 200 Dupan commemorating the deaths of indigenous people since white occupation. The installation was exhibited at the Biennial of Sydney-Beneath the Southern Cross, before moving to the National Gallery of Australia where it in on permanent display.

In the 1990s he was included in a number of major group exhibitions including the international show Aratjara (1993-4), Power of the Land (1994) at the National Gallery of Victoria and The Painters of the Wagilag Sisters Story at the NGA in 1997.

Gudthaykudthay completed a printmaking course in 1990s, at Charles Darwin University, focusing on lithography, lino cut and screen-printing. Gudthaykudthay has produced numerous successful prints, commonly with the stories of the Wagilag Sisters, Wititj (olive python) and the Native Cat – his personal totem. In 2013 (in his 80s!), Gudthaykudthay further completed a Certificate II in Visual Arts at the Charles Darwin University.

Gudthaykudthay featured in the 1967 documentary film Across the Top by Malcolm Douglas. The film documented traditional indigenous life in Arnhem Land, the Gulf of Carpentaria and Cape York.

In 2005, Gudthaykudthay made his big screen debut as The Sorcerer in the landmark Australian film Ten Canoes. The film was a great success and aided in educating the world about Yolngu culture in Ramingining, Central Arnhem Land.

Gudthaykudthay has experienced great success both nationally and internationally, with six individual solo shows, and over 50 group exhibitions. Gudthaykudthay’s artwork continues to be sought after by private and public collectors.


  • Aboriginal Art Museum, The Netherlands
  • Artbank, Sydney
  • Art Gallery of New  South Wales, Sydney.
  • Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide
  • British Museum, Department of Africa, Oceania and the Americas, London, UK
  • Charles Darwin University, Darwin
  • Flinders University Art Museum, Adelaide
  • Ganter Myer Collection
  • Kluge-Rhue Collection, University of Virginia, USA
  • Linden Museum, Stuttgart, Germany
  • Milingimbi Collection, MECA, Milingimbi Educational and Cultural Association
  • Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, Darwin
  • Museum of Contemporary Art, Ramingining Collection, Sydney
  • Museum of Mankind, British Museum, London
  • National Gallery of Australia, Canberra
  • National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
  • Parliament House Art Collection, Canberra
  • Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, USA
  • Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane
  • Queensland University of Technology Art Museum, Brisbane
  • University of Queensland, Anthropology Museum, St Lucia.
  • University of Technology, Sydney.

Bula’bula Arts

Bula’bula Arts is an locally owned and governed non-profit artists’ association in Ramingining in Central Arnhem Land, 400 kilometres east of Darwin. Bula’bula Arts represents approximately 150 artist members inclusive of all clan families and language groups from the Ramingining community and its surrounding outstations.It was founded more than 35 years ago and its artists have become world renowned for their paintings, sculptures and fibre works that have been featured in exhibitions around the world. Phillip has continued to be an active and significant member of Bula’bula Arts until recently.


This edition was created in partnership with Bula’bula Arts in Ramingining and commissioned by Anne Phelan and John Clark of Framed Gallery, the premier and groundbreaking fine art and craft gallery that operated in Darwin from 1984-2017. The artist was paid at the time of printing.

This artwork was distributed by the Australian Art Print Network.