As Qantas’ exciting new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner touched down in Alice Springs last week, members of the Copyright Agency’s visual arts licensing team were on the ground to see the outcome their work with the estate of the artist Emily Kame Kngwarreye.
The beautiful artwork adorning the new plane is an adaptation of the late Northern Territory artist and senior Anmatyerre woman’s 1991 painting, Yam Dreaming. Members of Emily’s family were on the ground in Alice Springs to witness the plane’s arrival from the United States where it was painted. The aircraft is named Emily Kame Kngwarreye as a tribute to the artist and her enduring legacy.
Copyright Agency, which recently merged with artists rights management company Viscopy, is Australia’s national copyright licensing organisation for the publishing, media, surveying and visual arts industries, and now represents over 13,000 Australian and New Zealand artists and over 40,000 international artists through global partners.
CEO of the Copyright Agency, Adam Suckling, says “We are proud to have been entrusted with the responsibility of negotiating the licence for the use of Emily Kame Kngwarreye’s work. She is recognised worldwide as one of Australia’s most significant late 20th century artists.”
“The Copyright Agency has a track record of ensuring the rights of visual artists are respected in licensing arrangements and that appropriate royalties are paid. This licence ensures the legacy of Emily Kame Kngwarreye is protected for her family and the Anmatyerre community.”
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said it was an honour to be in Alice Springs to receive the airline’s newest Dreamliner with Indigenous livery.
“As the aircraft enters our international fleet, we believe this Dreamliner, through colour and image, will tell a story of our unique Australian landscape and, by sharing our Indigenous culture with the world, the important story of reconciliation,” said Mr Joyce.
The Yam Dreaming artwork is an inspired contemporary masterpiece and depicts the culturally significant yam plant, an important symbol in Emily’s Dreaming stories and a staple food source in her home region of Utopia, 230km north-east of Alice Springs. The striking design adaptation was developed by leading Indigenous design studio Balarinji.
The original artwork is in the permanent collection of Campbelltown City Council in Sydney.
The airline’s newest Dreamliner featuring Emily Kame Kngwarreye’s Yam Dreaming, 1991 takes to the skies. Photo: Courtesy of Qantas