Australian Women's Register

An initiative of The National Foundation for Australian Women (NFAW) in conjunction with The University of Melbourne

Skip to content

Use Trove to find more resources by/about this Woman

  • Trove

Pizzi, Gabrielle (1940 - 2004)

Born
1940
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Died
5 December 2004
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Occupation
Gallery Owner and Art Collector
Alternative Names
  • Wren, Gabrielle (maiden name)

Summary

Gabrielle Pizzi, fanatical Collingwood Football Club supporter and granddaughter of the colourful Melbourne, Australia, identity John Wren, was one of the driving forces behind the acceptance of indigenous art in the wider community. In the early 1980s, Pizzi argued that Aboriginal art should not be trivialised as 'tribal' or 'primitive' but, instead, should be regarded as an integral part of the modern movement. She made it her life's mission to have Aboriginal art accepted as powerful contemporary art, bringing the dynamic works of artists including Ronnie Tjampitjinpa, Mick Namarari Tjapaltjarri and Emily Kam Kngwarray to world audiences by organising exhibitions in such unlikely places as Bangalore, Kiev and Jerusalem.

Pizzi began exhibiting Aboriginal art in Melbourne in the early 1980s, when there was still resistance to accepting it as a valid form of contemporary art. In 1987, she opened the Gallery Gabrielle Pizzi on Flinders Lane with an exhibition of cutting-edge Western Desert art. Unlike some later, exploitative dealers who capitalised on the boom she helped to create, Pizzi was known for her integrity. She always worked with art advisers from community art centres, ensuring that artists were paid correctly and new artists supported.

Sources used to compile this entry: Gabriella Coslovich, 'Farewell to a Trailblazer', The Age, 7 December, 2004; Philip Jones, 'Gabrielle Pizzi, Gallery owner, collector, 1940-2004', Sydney Morning Herald, 18 December, 2004.

Nikki Henningham

Site-wide information and acknowledgements

National Foundation for Australian Women The University of Melbourne, eScholarship Research Centre

© Copyright in The Australian Women's Register is owned by the Australian Women's Archives Project
and vested in each of the authors in respect of their contributions from 2000

http://www.womenaustralia.info/biogs/AWE1139b.htm

The Australian Women's Register is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Australia License

The Australian Women's Register is published quarterly by the Australian Women's Archives Project
ISSN 2207-3124