Tony Albert (Girramay/Kuku Yalanji) was born in Townsville, North Queensland in 1981 and holds a Bachelor of Visual Arts from the Queensland College of Art. He works in a number of art forms, including drawing, painting, photography, and installation. Albert is founding member of Queensland's Indigenous art collective proppaNOW. His art explores political, historical and cultural issues relevant to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia today.
Albert exhibits internationally and nationally and has been the recipient of numerous awards and prizes. In 2015 Albert completed a memorial in Hyde Park after being awarded the City of Sydney commission to create a public artwork. Titled 'Yininmadyemi - Thou didst let fall' the artwork honours the military service of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander service men and women.
In 2012 Albert became the first Aboriginal Australian official war artist. He was the first artist to be attached to the Army’s Regional Surveillance Force North West Mobile Unit (NORFORCE), and trained with the 2012 recruit intake at the unit’s Kangaroo Flats Training Area south of Darwin. Training involved weapons handling, navigation, first aid, basic drill, and signaling. Recruits of NORFORCE bring with them their own knowledge of Country and bush craft skills that are essential to patrol the isolated coastline of North Australia.
Albert was the first artist to cover the activities of the Australian Defence Force on Australian soil since the end of the Second World War.
Albert's grandfather, Eddie Albert, enlisted in 1940. As a member of the 2/15th Battalion of the 9th Division he served in the Middle East before becoming a prisoner of war in Germany and Italy. His grandfather's service and postwar experience as an Aboriginal returned serviceman has been an ongoing source of inspiration for Albert.