Glen Mackie (Kei Kalak)

glenmackieBorn: 1975 Yam Island, Torres Strait (Lives in Cairns
Language: Kala Lagaw (Central Torres Strait Islands)
Tribe: Iama (Yam Island)
Totems: Hammerhead Shark, Crocodile

Artist Story
Glen Mackie’s (Kei Kalak) bold ‘minar’, or infill-design style, incorporates family totemic designs and his own invented geometric repeating water pattern. He retells the myths and legendary stories he inherited from older family members. As Yam Island’s only practising artist he feels he has a responsibility to keep alive the sacred stories of the four brothers who travelled from the north before memory and settled Zenadh Kes, more commonly known as the Central and Eastern Torres Strait Islands. These four brothers were: Malu, who became god of Mer Island, Sigai, brother of Maiu, teacher of war, mamoose (leader) of Yam Islan; Kulka, third brother, teacher of hunting, mamoose of Ourete Island (Skull Island) and younger brother Siue, teacher of dance and mamoose of York Island. Art, law and the natural world are combined in Kei Kalak‘s work through intricately woven rhythmic patterns (minaral). He is a finalist in the Works on Paper section of the 2013 Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award.

Art Gallery of South Australia
Art Vault, Mildura, Vic
Cairns Regional Gallery, Cairns QLD
Canson Australia
City of Fremantle, WA
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra ACT
National Museum of Australia, Canberra ACT
Print Council of Australia
Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane QLD
St Ursula’s College, Toowoomba Qld
University of Wooongong, NSW