Gordon Barney


Born: 31/12/1945
Language: Gija, Kimberley Kriol
Skin: Jaangari
Ngarrangarni / Totem: Hill kangaroo, wedge tailed eagle
Region: The Kimberley



Gordon Barney was born and grew up on Alice Downs Station. His father taught him stockwork and he became known as a skilled horsebreaker and buckjumper (rodeo rider). When Gordon worked as a stockman, he would often carry with him a saddle bag for his ocher collection. At the end of his mustering stint, he would have a bagful of ochers that he sourced from riding through his country. Whilst working on Mabel Downs Station Gordon met Shirley Purdie who later became his wife. Shirley is a well known senior Warmun artist who encouraged Gordon to paint his country. He started painting in 1998 when Warmun Art Center commenced operation, often painting various hill lines located in his traditional country. Barney's sense of concentration and focus on country are often reflected in these landscapes. Gordon is well known in Warmun Community as a strong law and culture man and as an important ceremonial dancer.


Massacre stories from the south side of Purnululu
Ngarranggarni (Dreaming) stories from Birrno - Alice Downs Station country
Station life on Alice Downs Station


Chartwell Collection. Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki
Kerry Stokes Collection
Private Collections in Australia, Germany & USA