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Betty Muffler, Nellie Ngampa Coulthard and Pearl Austin

March 2022

curated by

Samantha Houben

Fe/mail displays artworks by First Nations women with anonymous  letters to the artist to foster an intimate and thought-provoking  environment. Open letters address barriers by sharing uncertainties that  unravel common threads of hesitation often felt when viewing art. They  seek to reveal that notions of women's experiences such as self-doubt  are often not our own but a product of our patriarchal, colonised  society.

As a form of fan-mail, letters physically travel across  Australia’s unique rich red landscape, Fe is the periodic symbol for  Iron, the strongest, most resilient metal, fundamental for survival.  Fe/mail uses the letters to consider both womankind and the foundations  of the earth. In this sense, it can be explored how works by First  Nations artists are far more than the abstract paint on the surface,  they hold invaluable histories, knowledge and are powerful  representations of our world.

Sam is a First Nations Māori woman  and emerging curator interested in exploring the female psyche. She  holds a Master in Digital Media, BAS majoring in Art History and is  completing her Master of Art Curating at Sydney University. With  experience working in private galleries, Sam is dedicated to promoting  an engaging environment fuelled by art for all to enjoy.



Ngangkari Ngura (Healing Country), 2016

91 x 122 cm (framed), acrylic on canvas

Artwork courtesy of a private collection

Image copyright Betty Muffler at Iwantja Arts

About the artist, Iwantja Arts:


Tjuntala Ngurangka (Country with Acacia Wattle), 2020

152 x 122 cm Synthetic polymer paint on linen

Artwork courtesy of a private collection

Image copyright Nellie Ngampa Coulthard Iwantja Arts

About the artist, Iwantja Arts:


(untitled) 39-21UA, 2022

121 x 121 cm, acrylic on Belgian linen

Artwork courtesy of a private collection. 

Image copyright Pearl Austin at Umoona Arts Centre

From Umoona Community Arts:

Exhibition Walkthrough

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