Ginger Riley Munduwalawala (circa 1937 – 1 September 2002) was an Australian contemporary artist. He was born in Marra country, in the Limmen Bight area of the Gulf of Carpentaria coast. His first language was Marra, now a critically endangered language. Riley became an artist during the 1950s as a result of his encounter with Albert Namatjira.
Riley was known for his distinctive style of using bright pallet to paint a landscape of Gulf of Carpentaria, populated by mythological figures who created the region. His art is a fusion of "Aboriginal" and "contemporary". He was referred as "the boss of colour". Riley was awarded the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award in 1987, the Northern Territory's Alice Prize in 1992, John McCaughey Memorial Art Prize in 1993, the first National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Heritage Commission Award in 1993 and an Australia Council Fellowship for 1997/98.
Ginger Riley's superlative colour sense sets him apart from other Indigenous Australian artists. His unique landscape manner, studded with icons of identity and place, is instantly recognisable yet it has attracted both passionate acclaim and vitriolic criticism. Riley's has forged his own way of encapsulating and celebrating the grand sweep and detailed minutiae of a particular tract of land in Southeast Arnhem Land, over which he now holds native title through his role as djungkayi (caretaker). In order to understand why Riley stands alone as an Indigenous painter, Ryan looks at his personal life history and the wellsprings of his art: his intimate connection to his mother's country.