Sambo Burra Burra Artist

Sambo Burra Burra Born: c1946
Region: Yugul Mangl (Ngukurr)- Roper River-Northern Territory
Language group: Wagilak (Warmud subsection)

Sambo Burra Burra also known as Djambu spent most of his early life at Nilbiji in Central Arnhem Land.

He was born around 1946. His father was Wagilak, his mother was Ritharrngu.

During the time Sambo was growing up there was limited contact with non Aboriginal people.

For the last 20 years Sambo Barra Barra has lived at Ngukurr with his artist wife Amy Jirwulurr Johnson and their children.

Ngukurr is a community on the Roper River on the southern border of Arhnem Land and it was the former Roper River Mission.

It is three hours from Katherine the nearest town and seven hours from Darwin the capital city of the Northern Territory.

During the wet season it is only accessible by plane or boat from the Roper River.

The landscape around Ngukurr is billabongs and wetlands and Sambos paintings sometimes feature the wildlife of the area.

Sambo has had numerous exhibitions in major galleries and his works are in many private collections.

He is an established identity as a senior Aboriginal Artist.

His work is characterized by subtle execution of design and combining traditional and modern symbols.

With Ginger Riley Munduwuwalawala he was the leader of a small group of artists who expressed their traditional stories in a new and radical way they began painting with acrylic on canvas departing from the traditional ochres on bark.

He was one of the first artists to take up the use of acrylic using bright colors not the traditional palette and using rarrk on canvas not bark.

Aboriginal Artists dictionary of biographies

Selected exhibitions: 1987 4th national Aboriginal Art Award,

Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory;

1988, 1990 Gallery Gabrielle Pizzi, Melbourne;

1994 National Galley of Victoria.Selected Collections:

National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne;

Gallery and Museum of the Northern Territory, Darwin:

Holmes a Court, Perth.