Irene Namok was born in April 1960 and comes from Lockhart with family connections to Thursday Island. She comes from the Kanthanampu language group. She is from Lockhart River in Queensland Australia. Her grandfather was a church minister at the Old Site Mission (Old Lockhart). Irene is one of the leading established Lockhart River artists. She is the mother of another well-known Lockhart River artist Rosella Namok who is also a current member artist. Irene has exhibited extensively in both solo and Lockhart River group exhibitions in Cairns, Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart Tasmania, Perth, Darwin, Houston Texas, Paris France and in Singapore.
From 3 June 2018 to 28 October 2018, Irene’s works will be exhibited in a permanent collection at Foundation Burkhardt-Felder et Culture Musee de l’art aboriegene australien “La grange” in Switzerland. The exhibition in Switzerland will include paintings from other Lockhart River artists, Silas Hobson, Patrick Butcher, Rosella Namok and Fiona Omeenyo and is titled “Islands in the sea”. Irene is Rosella Namok’s mother.
Irene has travelled to attend domestic group exhibition openings and international exhibitions in Singapore, Houston Texas and in May 2018 she will attend the exhibition opening in Switzerland.
Irene is known for her contemporary abstract paintings that underpins her footprint as an Indigenous Australian artist. Irene is a valuable active member artist. She has a wonderful personality and she has a strong depth of cultural and traditional knowledge about her Country known as Kutini which is Cassowary Country within the Iron Range in Lockhart River.
“I like mixing the colours that blends and that's how I get the colours from the brightness of the sun, like morning sun, midday sun and afternoon sunset. I take it from there now and put it on my linen and canvas. My painting is about land, about culture, ancestor stories that been passed down from my family elders and from my own childhood life. I also paint about my emotions. I paint about the bush fires and the waterholes. I paint about the rainforest and mountain ranges in my country. I also paint about the lagoons because we like to swim in the lagoons. I also paint about family and language group meeting times and festival times. I am happy when they buy my paintings because they taking a piece of my story with them to another place”. - Irene Namok
Lepley Collection Western Australia, Various high profile private collectors; Foundation Burkhardt-Felder et Culture Musee de l’art aboriegene australien “La grange” in Switzerland.