Lisa Michl is a Cairns based artist of the Kokoberrin language group from the central-west coast of Cape York.
Today the Kokoberrin reside mainly in Kowanyama, Normanton and other North Queensland communities where they maintain and practice cultural lifestyle through cultural responsibility, lore and ceremony.
Lisa’s traditional homelands on her mother’s and grandmother’s side are known as Pinnarinch and stretch between Staaten River National Park in the south and north to Nassau River, including Wyabba Creek and Dorunda Lodge area. The wild and remote lands of Pinnarinch encompass several important creation places with Ko-Manggen being one of them. In Kokoberrin language Ko-maggen means catfish. The totem name was given to Lisa by her great grandfather, the most senior Kokoberrin elder and lore man.
Lisa says, ‘For thousands of years our Australian landscape has been under indigenous land management. While today’s society has greatly impacted on our people carrying out traditional practices, it has not stopped us from handing down our cultural management systems. Like all indigenous peoples, we have a special relationship to our land which continues to provide us with our identity. Spending time on country with family is what grounds and maintains us. This is when our old ways are transferred onto younger generations.’
Lisa’w work speaks strongly about the significance and importance of access to country for Indigenous Australians and the importance of young leaders participating in the maintenance, preservation and protection of indigenous culture, and the sharing and hearing of stories.
On her father’s side, Lisa has links to the Czech Republic in Europe where her extraordinary works have been exhibited to wide acclaim. Lisa’s beautifully coloured earth-tone paintings and prints present intricate forms and bold designs that have found favour among collectors in the USA, Canada and Europe. Closer to home, Lisa has shown her works in prominent Australian exhibitions such as RAKA Award, Story Place, Indigenous Art of the Cape York & Rainforest and her works have been selected for the prestigious National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award.
Today Lisa continues to advance her creativity by working with printmaking techniques such as lino cut and etching. Lisa’s work can be found in the collections of the Queensland Art Gallery, Cairns Regional Gallery, Artbank and the Australian Embassy in Germany.
Subject & Themes
Pinnarinch country and the significant places and stories passed down to her by her ancestors
Australian Embassy Germany
Cairns Regional Gallery
Queensland Art Gallery
2005 Pinnarinch, Andrew Baker Dealer, Brisbane Qld.
2006 Earth’s Dust-Creation, Cairns Regional Gallery, Cairns Qld.
2006 Clear Day, Banggu Minjaany Art Gallery, Cairns Qld.
2006 Dreaming Story, Hogarth Galleries, Sydney NSW
2006 Returning Home, Helen Maxwell Gallery, Canberra ACT
2007 Japingka Gallery, Fremantle WA
2007 My Country, Hogarth Galleries, Sydney NSW
2007 Bundarra Gallery, Port Douglas Qld
2008 Stories of the Kokoberrin, The Dreaming Festival,
2008 Pinnarinch, Helen Maxwell Gallery, Canberra ACT
2008 Pretty Pretty Shell, MARS Gallery, Melbourne Vic
2009 My Homlands, Daintree Eco Lodge, Daintree Qld.
2009 Returning Home, Cairns Regional Gallery, Cairns Qld.
2009 Framed Gallery, Darwin NT
2009 Hogarth Gallery, Sydney NSW
2010 Japingka Gallery, Fremantle WA
2010 Stories of Pinnarinch AAN Galleries at Canopy Artspace,
2003 Great Art Exhibition, Germany Grosse Kunstausstellung, Dusseldorf Germany
2003 Story Place, Queensland Art Gallery Brisbane Qld
2003 Cape York and Torres Strait Art, Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane Qld
2004 Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Collection, University of Virginia, Charlottesville USA
2004 Out of Country, Washington DC USA
2005 Telstra National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Art Award, Museum & Art Gallery of the NT, Darwin NT
2006 NAIDOC, Tanks Art Centre, Cairns Qld.
2006 Gatherings II, Kickarts Gallery, Cairns Qld.
2006 Post Card Show, Cairns Regional Gallery, Cairns Qld.
2007 Aboriginal Tourism Australia, Opera House, Sydney NSW
2007 Telstra National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Art Award, Museum & Art Gallery of the NT, Darwin NT
2007 Post Card Show, Cairns Regional Gallery, Cairns Qld.
2008 Banggu Minjanny Art Gallery, Cairns Qld.
2008 Joan Winter Gallery, Brisbane Qld.
2008 Festival of Pacific Arts, Americian Samoa
2008 The Kate Challis RAKA Award, Ian Potter Museum of Art, University of Melbourne, Vic
2009 Summer Show, Hogarth Gallery, Sydney NSW
2009 Summer Show, Joan Winter Gallery, Brisbane, Qld
2009 Cairns Indigenous Art Fair, Tanks Arts Centre, Cairns Qld.
2009 UMI Arts, The Dreaming Festival, Woodford, Qld
2010 Cairns Indigenous Art Fair, Cairns Regional Gallery Qld
2010 Pathways, UMI Arts, Cairns, Qld
2011 Cairns Indigenous Arts Fair, Cairns Regional Gallery, Qld
2011 Post Card Show, Cairns Regional Gallery, Qld
2012 Cairns Indigenous Arts Fair, Cairns Regional Gallery, Qld
2012 Post Card Show, Cairns Regional Gallery, Qld
2012 Pathways, Umi Arts Cairns, Qld
2005 Yvonne Coen Indigenous Youth Art & Leadership Award,
Wilin Centre, Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne Vic (Special Mention)
2005 Heather Blair Award, Cairns Regional Gallery, (Award recipent for production and presentation of fine art paintings).
2006 Yvonne Coen Indigenous Youth Art and Leadership Award, Wilin Centre, Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne Vic (Award Recipent).
Eglitis, A, Meeks, A, Thaiday, K (2000), ‘Contemporary Aboriginal and Torrres Strait Islander Art, Vol 1’.
Edwards-Kalk, Shaun and Michl, Lisa (2000), ‘The Art and Life of the Kokoberrin’.
Edwards, Shaun and Black, Paul Dr. (1998), ‘The Kokoberrin Dictionary Vol 1’.
Edwards, Shaun and Jimmy, Kenny (1997), ‘The Oral History of the Kokoberrin’.
Quaill, Avril (2003), ‘Story Place: Indigenous Art of Cape York and the Rainforest’, Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, Qld., p.77, Adapted by Trish Johnson, Edited by Lynne Seear, Judy Gunning, Ian Were.
Hill, Peta (ed.) (1997), ‘Shadows in the Dust: a contemporary portrait of Aboriginal station life’, Glebe, NSW : Wild Pony exhibition catalogue.
Demozay, Marion (2001), ‘Gatherings, Contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art from Queensland, Australia’, Keeaira Press, Southport, Qld.
Demozay, Marion (2006), ‘Gatherings II’, Keeaira Press, Southport, Qld.
(2004), ‘Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Collection catalogue’, University of Virginia, USA.