was born at Daly River in 1975. The daughter of an Irish father and indigenous mother, and sister of highly renowned artist, Helen Tyalmuty McCarthy, Kerry was brought up in the Daly River community learning the ways of non-indigenous society while maintaining a deep respect for and understanding of the indigenous laws and traditions of her country. After moving to Darwin in 1985 and completing her schooling, Kerry moved back to the Daly River where she worked in various jobs. In 1994, at the suggestion of one of her indigenous mothers, Kerry started to paint. Originally Kerry pursued the traditional style of the area which focuses on depictions of animals and plants. However, following completion of a tertiary course in Art and Craft from Batchelor Institute of Advanced Education, Kerry’s style changed to subjects associated with indigenous tradition. This change was also influenced by her grandfather and by her spending two years on bush country at her mother’s home country at Bulgul. Kerry is a skilled colourist, precise in her work and continually exploring new means of expression of her stories of life and tradition in the Top End. The beautifully worked compositions that Kerry brings together in her paintings can be ethereal. They are like minutely observed cross-sections of nature that reveal the delicate patterning and relationships of the smallest elements.
Kerry Madawyn McCarthy spends her time with her three children between homes in Bulgul and Darwin. Ninbella is proud to introduce the works of Kerry Madawyn McCarthy in its programme of new and emerging Aboriginal artists.