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Peter Nangwurrma Wurrawilya, Anindilyakwa people, Groote Eylandt, Northern Territory, Castle Rock (Diduwa) and Shy Crab (Mamukiyeliya) c. 1945–49, natural pigments and orchid extract on bark, 65 x 32 cm irreg. The University of Melbourne Art Collection. The Leonhard Adam Collection of International Indigenous Culture. © 2006, Anindilyakwa Land Council
The Leonhard Adam Collection includes items from Australia, Papua New Guinea, New Zealand, Asia, America and Africa. It was formed largely by Dr Leonhard Adam, a distinguished scholar and lecturer in the Department of History at the University of Melbourne during the 1940s and 1950s. Adam was born in Berlin in 1891 where he studied ethnology, law and Sinology, joined the Bar and served as a Judge. After fleeing Germany he was deported from England during the Second World War. He arrived in Victoria aboard the Dunera in 1940, and after a period of internment at Tatura, joined the staff of the university. An important group of thirty-six painted barks from Groote Eylandt, collected in 1945 for an exhibition in Melbourne, and given to the university in 1946, is one of the highlights of the Leonhard Adam Collection.